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Why Your Site Must be Mobile Friendly

Mobile friendliness is a new concept that is being talked about a lot in the web design and app development industry. It refers to the ability of a website to render in mobile devices without breaking the URLs or distorting the content. Mobile friendliness is an important feature for every website because it allows mobile users to also access the contents of the website.

As a matter of fact, it is a win-win situation both for the owner of the website as well as the users. But there are other reasons for having mobile friendly sites other than to simply make them render on mobile devices. They include the following:

Increased Site Traffic

When websites can be accessed via mobile devices, there is an increase in the total number of visitors to the site. This is because the people who couldn’t access the site before are now able to log in and view the sites’ content. An increase in traffic will definitely increase the exposure of that firm leading to more clients and business.

Accessibility on the Go

A mobile friendly website can be accessed from any place and at any time provided you have a mobile device and internet connectivity. This is very important for those who might find it urgent to respond to client’s inquiries on the website when they are out in the field. They will simply do it right from the field without necessarily coming back to the office to use their office computers.

Advantage on Search Engine Optimization

Search engines like Google have a special preference for mobile friendly websites. In most cases, the will reward such sites with good ranks on the search engines. When this happens, the website won’t just get increased exposure but also get lots of quality targeted traffic which might convert into leads and new clients. Every website in the internet admires free organic traffic and if you want the same for your website, then you have to make it mobile friendly.

Enhanced User Experience

User experience websites that are not user friendly offer very poor user experience. For instance, they will send broken URLs and distort images and the other content when viewed on mobile devices. Most users will be irritated by the poor user experience and may not come back to that site again. This is not just loss of exposure but might turn into a loss of quality visitors which might have turned into customers.

Mobile Friendly Sites Load Faster

Responsive websites are generally lightweight and will render very fast when viewed across multiple devices. This will enhance the user experience since users will not have to wait for a long time before they receive the contents of the website.

These are just but a few of the reasons why it is imperative for every serious website to be user friendly.

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How to Become a Millionaire by Age 30

Follow these ten steps to get — and stay — rich during the earliest stage of your career.

Getting rich and becoming a millionaire is a taboo topic. And saying it can be done by the age of 30 seems like a fantasy. Well, it shouldn’t be taboo and it is possible.

Here are the 10 steps I took to become a millionaire. Follow them and by age 30, you will be one, too.

1. Follow the money
You can not save your way to millionaire status. The first step is to focus on increasing your income in increments and repeating that. My income was $3,000 a month and nine years later it was $20,000 a month. Start following the money and it will force you to control revenue and see opportunities.

2. Don’t show off — show up!
I didn’t buy my first luxury watch or car until my businesses and investments were producing multiple secure flows of income. I was still driving a Toyota Camry when I became a millionaire. Be known for your work ethic, not the trinkets that you buy.

3. Save to invest, don’t save to save
The only reason to save money is to invest it. Put your saved money into secured, sacred (untouchable) accounts. Never use these accounts for anything, not even an emergency. This will force you to continue to follow step one, which is to increase income. To this day, at least twice a year, I am broke because I always invest my surpluses into ventures that I cannot access.

4. Avoid debt that doesn’t increase your cash flow
Make it a rule that you never use debt that won’t make you money. I borrowed money for a car only because I knew it could increase my income. Rich people use debt to leverage investments and grow cash flows. Poor people use debt to buy things that make rich people richer.

5. Treat money like a jealous lover
Millions wish for financial freedom, but only those that make it a priority have millions. To get rich and stay rich you will have to make it a priority. Money is like a jealous lover. Ignore it and it will ignore you, or worse, it will leave you for someone who loves it more!

6. Outwork your competition
Money doesn’t know about clocks, schedules or holidays — and you shouldn’t either. Money loves people that have a great work ethic. When I was 26 years old, I was in retail and the store I worked at closed at 7 p.m. Most times you could find me there at 11 p.m. making an extra sale. Never try to be the smartest or luckiest person — just make sure you outwork everyone.

7. Being poor makes no sense
I have been poor, and it sucks. I have had just enough to get by, and that sucks almost as bad. Eliminate any and all ideas that being poor is somehow okay. Go to war with being broke! To quote General George S. Patton, “Success is how you bounce on the bottom.”

8. Get a millionaire mentor
Most of us were brought up middle class or poor and then hold ourselves to the limits and ideas of that group. I have studied millionaires to learn their mindset and principles and I duplicated what they did. Get your own personal millionaire mentor and study them. Most rich people are extremely generous with their knowledge and their resources.

9. Get your money to do the heavy lifting
Investing is the golden goose for becoming a millionaire. You should make more money off your investments than from your work. The second company I started required a $50,000 investment. That company has paid me back that $50,000 every month for the last 10 years. My third investment was in real estate. I started with $350,000, which was a large part of my net worth at the time. I still own that property today and it continues to provide me with income. Investing is the only reason to do the other steps, and your money must work for you and do your heavy lifting.

10. Shoot for $10 million, not $1 million
The single biggest financial mistake I’ve made was not thinking big enough. I encourage you to go for more than a million. There is no shortage of money on this planet, only a shortage of people thinking big enough.

Apply these 10 steps and they will make you rich. Steer clear of people that suggest your financial dreams are born of greed. Avoid get-rich-quick schemes, be ethical, never give up, and once you make it, be willing to help others get there, too.

 

Source: entrepreneur.com

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10 Things You Must Do to Grow Your Online Business in the First Year

Business forecasts indicate that ecommerce is exploding, which means now is the perfect time for startups to firmly establish their online stores. There are numerous tactics for nurturing a new online business. If you’re just getting started, now’s the perfect time to make sure all the elements for your online success are in place.

Let’s review 10 crucial steps to capitalizing on this trend:

1. Carefully target the online audience.
Ecommerce depends largely on a reputable, accessible online presence. To be recognized as such, businesses must make themselves available to those who are most likely to notice. Identify the demographic characteristics of consumers who will benefit from relevant products and services, and base marketing strategies on these details.

2. Create high-quality content and deliver it at high speed.
High-quality content is described as relevant and engaging information that encourages site visitors to return in the future. Content should reflect the given brand in tone and style, and include the company’s mission statement, services and policies. It should also offer industry education and urge interaction with consumers. This may take the form of asking questions, answers to which can be provided in online comment sections. Interaction can also take place via surveys and contests.

But Internet-based businesses live and die by their online visibility and credibility, and they’re judged by more than just consumers. They’re also judged by search engines, which play a major role in bestowing that credibility and visibility. In the wake of recent security vulnerabilities making national headlines such as the HeartBleed bug, secure web hosting which thwarts vulnerabilities is essential for maintaining credibility, and speedy website load times are essential for delivering a positive user experience, maximizing sales conversions and optimizing from an SEO (search engine optimization) perspective.

Amazon reported a 1 percent revenue increase for every 100 milliseconds improvement in load time. Furthermore, Google has stated that fast load speeds are indeed a factor in the ranking algorithm. In response, VPS hosting is quickly becoming more popular among new businesses looking to maximize site speed, as opposed to traditional, shared hosting services.

3. Personalize content.
Visitors know that unique, individualized web experiences are possible, which is why they expect such features. Take advantage of available technology that can generate shopping selections based on personal preferences. While some of the larger websites (Google, Apple, Facebook, etc.) have apps built into their system that identify users and track their online movements, small businesses might focus on smaller CRM solutions. Batchbook, ContactMe, and Zoho are perfect CRM software solutions for small businesses, each costing less than $20 a month.

4. Invest in mobile capabilities.
Consumer use of mobile devices is greater than ever before, which is why a robust mobile ecommerce platform is crucial. Available solutions include mobile sites, responsive sites, apps, click-to-call tools, maps and real-time notifications.

5. Integrate sales channels.
Enable consumers to experience the brand similarly across all channels of interaction and methods of shopping. Promotions, products, services, company information and policies should be available both on and offline.

6. Consider subscription.
Subscription commerce occurs in various forms. For instance, the replenishment model allows for a product to be sent to a customer every month or other regular basis. The discovery model provides for new and exciting experiences with each delivery. These may include customized or rare items. It’s up to the company to decide which form of subscription works best for them, and to implement that into their sales and marketing strategies. Most CRM software and programs organize consumer data that can be used to delineate and track which model each customer prefers and whether the customer has subscribed or not.

7. Remember logistics.
Scalability is integral to growing a business. To accommodate growth, third-parties such as UPS, Nippon Express, or DB Schenker can be depended upon to manage large and complex transactions. Costs will vary based upon the size of the transaction, the size of shipments, the distance that products need to be shipped or the complexity of the transaction. Third-party logistics become more cost effective as a company grows and handles larger transactions. Reverse logistics — the efficient handling of product exchanges and returns — is significant as well.

For Internet-based businesses, website speed, security and infrastructure are important foundations of not only logistics, but also SEO. These aspects of online business translate to better search engine visibility, resulting in more traffic, leads, brand credibility and sales. Speeding up your website is crucial for online logistics.

8. Skip the middlemen.
Thanks to the Internet, small businesses can reach consumers quickly and easily. Also, manufacturers are increasingly eager to work directly with small businesses because they realize small brands are likely to bring new and innovative products to the marketplace — they are less limited by minimal shelf space and complex supply chains.

9. Sell Internet-only merchandise.
Although essential to maintain continuity across multiple sales channels, it is still possible to offer products via the Internet only. Doing so builds an exclusive brand with ecommerce as the core distribution channel. By offering certain products in only one arena, it is possible to maintain greater control over margins.

10. Curate a proprietary selection.
Proprietary selection refers to a strategy dedicated to “curating” a deep but narrow array of exclusive products in a specific segment. These areas give the relevant merchandise the allure of distinction due to original characteristics and the difficulty of locating such a selection elsewhere.

One of the main goals of any business is consistent growth. Through careful strategic planning, quality marketing campaigns and a healthy combination of the steps outlined above, conversions are likely to increase steadily.

Source: entrepreneur.com

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7 Habits of a Self-Made Millennial Millionaire

Many of the world’s greatest thinkers, creators, and innovators have been defined by their routines and habits. There are many people who say that the way you start the day is what defines your success.

For millennia, those who have made a consistent effort to contribute change to the world have had a defined set of ways that they created their realities.

Even Marcus Aurelius psyched himself up to do his work, meaning that, even two thousand years ago, the greatest philosophical minds in the world were secretly giving themselves pep talks to persevere. Taking responsibility for your own motivation and intentions is a timeless activity, and one that can lead to astronomical wins.

There are a few things in my repertoire that I have to credit with keeping me in alignment with my integrity and my goals. Given that I was able to become a self-made millionaire twice before the age of 30, I’m sharing some of my secrets in an effort to encourage you to be more, do more, and aim for more — because you’re in charge of getting there, and you’re also the only one who can hold you back.

To be straight up — so much of grinding until you shine has to do with taking really, really good care of yourself. Yeah, there will be times when you’re not sleeping much and pushing hard for what you love. But, it’s no excuse not to keep up with other healthy habits — a well-oiled machine is the one that travels farthest. Your game is on point when you’re on top of your game.

I remember the first time I saw Tony Robbins in New Jersey. Those of you who have now seen his pretty amazing documentary on Netflix are clear on all of the crazy habits he has, but really, they’re not that crazy. It’s just that they’re not common. That’s also because it’s uncommon for people to reach his level of success and presence. See the connection?

Here are seven ways that I make meaningful efforts to stay on top of my own rising:

1.Positive thinking.
Your mind dictates your reality. What you think is what you will experience. Science has proven our ability to rewire our own brains, through changing our thought patterns and engaging in practices like meditation [it’s called neuroplasticity.] So, that’s a thing. Why would you not take advantage of the fact that you can literally program yourself for success? Positive thinking is imperative. Nobody is going to be positive 100 percent of the time, we’re human, but making an effort to shift your perspective consistently is going to impact your life in ways you can’t imagine. Believe you can and you will. It’s true. Pep talk yourself. Marcus Aurelius and I are both into it.

2. Practice what you preach.
Nobody trusts someone who doesn’t walk their talk. And you can tell when someone is off of their authenticity game. Execute. Don’t just talk about it. Be it. Every. Single. Day. Make plans, and crush them. If you don’t get through your whole to do list, it’s no worries — what matters is that you show up for those ideas and plans every day. Take it seriously, a little pressure on yourself is healthy, but also know that it’s a daily practice of showing up big.

3. Greet the day.

Get up with the people, or before. Rising at noon because you don’t have to be at an office is actually not impressive. You don’t have to start working early if it doesn’t suit you, but humans are built to rise when the sun wakes up — so make an effort to be more human, and not only will your days feel much easier [because you have more time in them.] but you’ll have time to yourself before the insanity of building your empire begins. This morning time is key. It’s a great time to exercise or move your body, power up with healthy eats, and get your mind right. How you prepare for each day adds up. If you were running for president, would you jump right into election day, without any campaigning, with sweatpants on, having slept in until 1 p.m.? Nope. Get up, get after it.

4. Embrace collaboration.
Success is never exclusively self-made. That’s actually a big, annoying lie. While we can be responsible for the dreams that led us to great success, hence the title of this article, we never get where we’re going alone. We really need each other, we need mentors, we need community. Going it alone will dig you deep into a big hole. Additionally, you need a team. Being a solopreneur is great as long as it suits you in the beginning, but trying to do everything by yourself when you grow to the point that it’s really stressing you out is no way to run a business. A leader does not solely lead his/her own life, but also leads others on the path to greatness.

5. Consistency is key.
This is important not just in your personal life, but also as far as business goes. Consistency is how you build following and presence, but it’s also how you create results. It’s easy to get distracted, but you can teach yourself to starve your distractions and feed your focus. This is one of the key ways I’ve leaned up my time to make my success even more inevitable. Focus on what’s important — not comparing yourself to others or worrying too much about the future. Focus on what you can do today, right now, for yourself and where you’re going.

6. Integrity always.

Your word is your value. If you want to be seen as a leader, act like one in all ways. That isn’t limited to what you’ve built. The physical manifestations of success and material wealth, pale in comparison to the growth in character you experience when you understand what it means to build something of value. If you create something that will impact the lives of others, inevitably, it will impact your life in incredible ways as well. Stay in integrity. Speak with intention. Act with regality.

7. Gratitude and mindfulness.
Gratitude is game-changing. If you’ve set even one foot into the world of personal development, you’ll know this. But kicking your negative thoughts to the curb is a non-negotiable. When you’re grateful for what you’ve already got, and don’t take your life for granted, you’ll be way happier. This makes all of the steps prior to this so much easier. Start each day listing three things you’re thankful for. Give love to yourself, your family, your friends, your team — life is short. Appreciate it now, not later.

Mindfulness is your ability to listen to the Leader Within [or your inner voice] which is a lot quieter than your ego. You can train yourself to hear your truth and act on it through a meditation practice or other mindful activities like slowing down to breathe a few times during the day, mindful exercise or writing/talking with someone.

These are some of the ways that I keep myself in check. In truth, eighty percent of being a leader is learning to lead yourself. Keep your mindset on point, stay in integrity, and appreciate what you have. Practice some of these habits, and create your own. If you stay consistent with them, I promise your life will change.

Source: entrepreneur.com

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What to do if your Yahoo account was hacked

The latest Yahoo hack is a doozy you shouldn’t ignore. The company said on Thursday at least 500 million user accounts were affected by a massive data breach. The hack happened in 2014, when “state-sponsored actor” stole account information, including names, emails, passwords, telephone numbers and answers to some security questions.

So what should you do if you have a Yahoo account?

First and foremost, you’ll want to change your password immediately. All Yahoo account holders should also change their security questions and answers.

If your account is one Yahoo suspects was compromised, you’ll be prompted to enter a new password as soon as you log on. If you used the same password on other accounts, change those, too.

Here are other steps to take to secure your online accounts.

Change passwords often

Yahoo is asking anyone who hasn’t changed their password since 2014 to update it. This is good advice for everyone: Passwords should be changed often. You won’t always get a timely notice from a company that an account was compromised — and sometimes it might not even know about a hack until much later. In this case, it took two years for the company to confirm the breach.

Never use the same password twice

Repeat after us: Never use the same password twice. If hackers get the password for one of your online accounts, they can try to use it to access your other accounts that take the same credentials.

Pick better passwords

Consider using a phrase instead of single words that are more easily guessed. Don’t go for common phrases like cliches: Pick a combination of words that don’t go together — i.e. rather than “herecomesthesun,” go for something like “wombatbootsparade”.

Avoid using common passwords like 1-2-3-4-5-6 or p-a-s-s-w-o-r-d (see more here), and include a mixture of numbers, letters and characters.

Use a password manager

Since strong unique passwords are a huge pain to memorize, try a password manager like 1Password or LastPass. These platforms generate and store passwords and security answers for every account you have, so you only have to remember a single master password.

Update those security questions

If you forget a password, using security questions is an easy way to gain access back into your own account — its not like you’ll ever forget your mom’s maiden name. But some Yahoo security answers and questions were a part of the breach. The company has already disabled any unencrypted security answers on its accounts.

If you frequently use the same security questions and answers for other online accounts, you’ll want to change those, as well. Attackers could use the information taken from Yahoo to obtain access to other online accounts that contain even more sensitive information.

Avoid choosing the obvious questions and don’t provide answers that are easy to find online through Google searches, social media sites or old Live Journal entries.

Be alert
The company is urging users to look through their Yahoo accounts (email, calendar, groups, etc.) for any signs of suspicious activity. Although it doesn’t say what to look for, start by checking outgoing emails.

Be extra careful about clicking on links or opening downloads from unknown email addresses. If anyone emails asking for your password, it’s a red flag — even if it looks like it’s coming from a legitimate place like Yahoo or a bank. Never share any account information or passwords over email.

Turn on two-factor authentication

On its own, a password isn’t a strong line of defense. Adding a second type of authentication, like a one-time code sent over text message or generated by an app, can greatly secure your online accounts.

Yahoo is recommending people turn on its two-factor authentication tool: Yahoo Account Key. It even eliminates the need to memorize a Yahoo password.

If you use the Yahoo Android or iOS app, log in to your account, go to your profile and select Account Key. You can also set it up in a web browser. Each time you try to access your account, Yahoo will send a confirmation to your phone.

While it’s certainly an extra step, make it a part of your daily routine. Next time there’s a story about a massive data breach, you’ll be glad you did.

Source: cnn.com

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4 Things Every Entrepreneur Needs to Do the First Week of the New Year

Don’t just get busy, get busy doing what is basic to growth the next 12 months.

Now that the holidays are over and the new year is in full swing, it’s time to head back to the lab to formulate fresh, smart, and effective ideas that will grow your organization.

Whatever the size of your firm, whether you’re B2B or B2C, and regardless of the industry in which you operate, here are four must do’s that you need to launch if you’re aiming to increase profits and market share over the next 365 days:

1. 100-Day Plan

Since the 1930’s when Franklin Roosevelt pioneered it as a means of gauging his effectiveness in the Oval Office, the 100-day plan has become a tradition for newly elected American Presidents. The plan consists of achievable short term goals that adhere to a President’s long term vision for the country. Entrepreneurs should write their own 100 day plans as blueprints for advancing their organization’s productivity and profitability. Such a plan establishes 100 tasks, and requires business owners to consider the specific steps and resources that are needed to bring them to fruition. While there’s a time and place for visionary long term planning, the 100-day plan allows entrepreneurs to craft and pursue attainable objectives and start the year off with a burst of energy. When the 100-day finish line is reached mid-April, entrepreneurs will know if they should be celebrating or if they need to recalibrate their efforts.

2. Declutter

Whether you want to improve the feng shui of your office or just make it easier to find and store your stuff, a comprehensive tidy up of your company’s work space is a laborious yet necessary task. To make it happen, set aside a Saturday when your team can come in, rent a dumpster and high capacity paper shredder, and destroy unnecessary documents, presentations and files, and toss out old equipment, brochures, books, product samples, and other unproductive items. Once your space has been tightened and tidied, implement a cloud-based backup system that allows for fast and convenient recovery of your organization’s electronic files. The decluttering will not only allow your team to operate more efficiently, it will also help your office to look more streamlined and professional.

3. Fire the person you know you have to fire

Maybe you’ve tried to intervene to help turn things around, or you’ve ignored the problem in hopes that it would eventually take care of itself. But however you’ve handled the challenge of having weak members on your team, you know that they’re there and that they’re dangerous the to the health of your company. If you didn’t have the heart to do any purging during the holiday season, delay no longer. The costs to your firm in reduced productivity, low employee morale, additional supervision, damaged client relationships, and lost revenue that are caused by substandard employees can be as high as $190,000 per year, so make a decision now to either remedy a situation that’s fixable — or to clean house.

4. Get high or higher

While 26 states and the District of Columbia have laws legalizing marijuana, the suggestion here isn’t that entrepreneurs should light up more. Instead, the first week of the new year is a perfect time to review and possibly raise the prices of your products or services. Too many small business owners try to compete by lowering their prices, and that’s often a mistake. Instead, devise a plan by studying your competitive landscape; looking at your firm’s pricing history; reviewing the calendar to determine the best time to bump up your rate, fees, or prices; and thinking about how you can enhance the value of your offerings in order to justify price revisions. If you detect some white space that would allow for small yet profitable increases, you should absolutely seize it.

After the joy and frenzy of the holidays, it’s understandable if it takes a minute for business owners to snap back to attention and keep their ships moving forward, but the upside to getting started is significant. Entrepreneurs who have the discipline to leverage these four steps as an annual early January organizational “reboot” will help to energize their teams, inspire exciting ideas, and generate new opportunities for innovation and growth.

 

Source: entrepreneur.com

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