A couple of bugs in the system can cause major problems. When computers are causing problems, you’ll wish you had hired an IT support company sooner.

The benefits of an IT support company become apparent when everyone is running around wringing their hands without a clue what to do.

Before you run out and hire the first company you come upon, read this article for five tips that will help you select the best company for you.

What to Look for in an IT Support Company

Hiring the first IT professional that darkens your door may prove to be more of a horror than not having any help at all. You’re opening up your systems to a stranger and their IT services. You want to make sure they are trustworthy.

1. Assess Your Company’s Goals

Before you look for an IT Services company, you need to know why you need their help. Do you have anyone in-house that can help with small issues?

If you have someone that is in-house and takes care of the smaller issues, you may only need access to senior technological issues.

2. Look for a Team

Having a team of professionals on your side can allow you to get faster service. You will also have access to people that may know other aspects of tech than if you just hired a one-man operation.

The team that you hire should work well together and have a good leader.

3. Look for Positive & Negative Reviews

When doing your research online, don’t purely look at on their website testimonials. You also should not only look at off-site positive reviews. You need to see the whole picture.

Read negative reviews can help you see if there are deeper issues you need to ask questions about. You may also see that the negative reviews are somewhat frivolous and won’t bother you or your company’s goals.

4. Ask for Referrals

Any good IT support company will be able to give you the names and means to contact referrals. If they don’t have referrals yet that either means they’ve not done good work for their previous clients or that they are a new company.

Allowing a new company to handle your IT can be scary, so make sure you trust them and that they have the proper training if you do decide to go with a new company.

5. Communication & Response Time

How quickly does the company respond when you reach out to them?

Is it easy to communicate with them?

Lack of communication and slow response times can cause major problems in your company. Hire someone that gets back to you and fixes the problem quickly.

Keep Your Business Moving Along Nicely

Now that you know how to find a good IT support company, you’re likely to want to go through other information to help your business.

Computers aren’t the only thing that can cause problems. What about other electronics and setups?

Read our article about electric cables and what you need to know about them so you can be the handy cable hooker-uper in your company.

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6 Reasons Why Your Website Sucks (and What You Can Do About It)

Have you ever browsed the website of a big company like Dell or Samsung? Were you impressed with how easily you found what you were looking for, despite the all the complexity of their product lines? I guess you probably were. These websites are built to the highest of professional standards. And as a result, the user experience is seamless.

But all too often, startups fail to emulate the seamlessness generated by the big companies. What seems like it should be straightforward and easy turns out to be a lot more complicated than they imagined. Here are some of the reasons why your website sucks and what you can do about it.

1. Boring headlines

In a world that’s full of low brow content and click-bait, it can be hard for your business to compete. People will click on titles that they find the most titillating, rather than the most informative. Titles which aren’t attractive aren’t going to attract much attention on the internet. They might interest specialists, but not the general public.

Making the titles on your website sexier is an easy first step to making your site more attractive. The next step is to include interesting images and perhaps infographics to reel in even more people. Often it’s just about keeping up with what others in your industry are doing, just to enable you to compete.

2. No blog

If you’ve spent any time browsing the sites of smaller companies, you’ll have noticed a trend over the last few years. They all have blogs. No longer is blogging reserved for foodies and disgruntled youth. It’s a tool that practically everybody is using to drive traffic to their websites. But why?

It all comes down to content. First off, search engines love new content. In fact, they take it into consideration every time they calculate your site’s ranking.

But also, the people looking for your product will probably want to read more about it. That’s why you’ll often find blogs on the sites of companies that sell complex products.

Legal firms, for example, make a point of running blogs that explain how their processes work in layman’s terms. It’s all designed to be helpful, accessible content for potential customers.

3. No website marketing plan

Your website is like the display window at the front of a department store. It’s the public facing part of your business. And it’s got to look good. But all too often, startup websites aren’t fronts for their brands. They’re generic templates that look as if they’ve been thrown together in five minutes.

Building brand identity through your website is an essential part of building a successful business. Because it’s your website that the public and other businesses see, this is what defines you. That’s why it’s so important that it’s good.

Take a couple of hours thinking about exactly what information you want to communicate through your website. What should it be saying about your business? And are there any graphics or logos that you should include to make it consistent?

4. Being too modest

The internet is full of people unashamedly screaming out for attention. Sometimes what they have to offer is good. But most of the time, the content itself is far from ideal.

The problem for the startup, however, is being heard above the noise. This is challenging enough in itself. But often startups will be further hamstrung because they are too modest to seek publicity.

The key to generating interest in your website is to tell your story. It doesn’t have to be War and Peace, of course. It just has to be the story about why your company is unique.

Customers are most interested in your story than you realise. Stories are what draws them into your firm’s brand. It’s what gives customers an affinity with you do. And it’s what gives them something to believe in.

If your startup is an ethical company, you can build this ethical aspect into your brand by telling a story. Perhaps you wanted to set up a chain of healthy, fast-food restaurants because you objected to what the big corporates were doing. This is the type of story that people can really get on board with. And it’s the sort of thing that will align them with your brand.

5. Failing to list on established sites

Even if you do everything right, your website may still get lost in among the billions of pages on the internet. That’s why it’s worth using more established sites to get a leg up.

The first thing that you can do is make comments on other sites. The goal here isn’t necessarily to build links. It’s to create engaging, helpful and meaningful content that will build reputation. As your name floats around the internet, this will divert more traffic to your website and help improve its visibility.

The second thing that you can do is write articles and try to get them published on other websites. This will mean that more people will come into contact with your message. And more potential customers are likely to want to know more about you by going to your website. Guest blogging is an excellent way to get your site known to another site’s audience.

The third thing that you can do is connecting your site through popular social media channels. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are all being used right now by businesses to promote their websites and their content.

6. Failing to use pay-per-click advertising

In the early days, very few people will visit your site, if any. The majority of your business will be done through word of mouth and recommendations. But there are limits to that kind of growth in a digital economy. And that’s why pay-per-click advertising is so important.

Essentially, PPC funnels interested customers to your website, dramatically increasing traffic. PPC is moderately expensive for a startup. But it’s something that can be tapered down once you build your reputation and traffic increases naturally. Often PPC advertising pays for itself. Most small businesses will use something like Google Adwords.

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