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cyber security tips and advice for small businessesYou don’t need to be a multi-national enterprise to be an enticing target for cyber criminals. Half of small business owners experience at least one type of cyber-attack over a one-year period, research from Nationwide’s Small Business Indicator survey revealed.

The reality is poor cyber security awareness and a lack of dedicated IT professionals make startups and small businesses tempting targets to well-funded networks of cyber criminals. So what are the simple steps you can take to protect your business? Continue…

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Key data science termsThere is a lot of talk about data science, big data, AI, and IoT these days, but what is the reality behind the hype? What do these terms actually mean, and what impact could these have on your business?

Let’s take a look at 10 of the highest profile tech terms affecting businesses in 2018; Continue…

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technology to help your business growBritain’s entrepreneurial nature is highlighted by the fact that a new business is founded every hour. But only a small portion of these start-ups will make the leap to become a growing business that enjoys success at scale.

For the best chance of becoming a successful scale-up, small businesses need the right people, systems and processes in place, with an invest-to-grow mindset. They need to plan for the complexity, standardise and automate processes wherever possible and eliminate manual processes. Continue…

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How to use Google Analytics to boost website resultsThere are a million things to think about when you start a small business. Your website alone is a field of rabbit holes – content, structure, design, SEO, social media integration – down any one of which you might lose yourself for days if you don’t know what you’re doing.

One area that small business owners tend to neglect, or to consider out of their league is web traffic analytics. Yet this form of stat management is nothing less than essential if you want to make your website a worthwhile proposition. Continue…

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business phones mobiles broadband voipEveryone wants to get the best deal on their telecoms – but buying just on price, is unlikely to give you a great return.

Not all telecoms solutions are the same; so, it’s important to ask the right questions to ensure you are comparing like for like.

To help you get the best deal on your business telecoms, we asked, telecoms specialist Dave Millett to reveal the key questions you need to ask when looking to get broadband, lines, mobiles and VOIP solutions for your business.

Continue…

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should you get MS Office 365For any small business, the decision to switch to a cloud-based system where all pieces of data can be stored online is one that’s worth deliberating.

Platforms such as Microsoft Office 365 have many benefits, but they might not always be suitable for every business. To help you decide whether or not it’s a system that works for your business, here are the pros and cons of using MS Office 365 for business. Continue…

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Running your own business can be very enjoyable, if also fraught with potential distractions. You must make sure that you stay focused while instilling the same attitude in any employees that you have brought under your wing. However, software can help ease both responsibilities for you.

Here are some great examples of tools that can help you manage your corporate time, cut out administrative errors and, ultimately, maximise your workforce’s productivity and output. Continue…

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Cyber security issues 2018Every article on cybercrime makes alarming statements about the issue becoming more of a threat year after year.

And sure enough, this was borne out in 2017 with some very high-profile cyber attacks, significantly impacting both the NHS and the UK government.

So, as a small business owner, what are the key cybesecurity threats and issues you need to watch out for in 2018, and how can can you guard your business against these? Continue…

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business telecoms - what business owners need to think aboutTechnological developments are driving changes in all aspects of business. And business telecoms is no different.

Startup and small businesses can reap the benefits the advances in technology are bringing, but they need to ask the right questions when it comes to the cloud, contracts, coverage and customers.

So what are the key factors and trends small business owners need to think about when it comes to business telecoms in 2018? Continue…

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should you get a leased line for your business

While, you may be willing to put up with a bit of buffering if you’re trying to watch YouTube comedy clips, a slow connection can be no joke for your business.

If slow connection is an issue for your business, your service will almost certainly be ADSL over a standard copper phone line. In these circumstances, it may be cost-effective to upgrade to a leased line Continue…

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telecoms solutions over holidaysChristmas is fast approaching and if you started a business in 2017 this may be the first Christmas period you have experienced as a business owner.

It’s therefore important to starting think early about your telecoms and your customers over the festive season. If you don’t plan now, you may find that rather than having a relaxing festive break, you’ll be in a pickle.

We’ve asked telecoms expert, Dave Millett to explain what you need to think about to ensure your business runs smoothly over the festive season. Continue…

costs of cyber attack on small businessTalking about the ominous threat of cyber-attacks these days has a whiff of closing-the-stable-door-after-the-horse-has-bolted about it.

Cybercrime is out there and it’s happening right now to organisations of all sizes, in all sectors, all over the world.

Hacks are more sophisticated, viruses are more widespread and systems are more vulnerable than ever. If the great and good (and wealthy) of the business world can’t stop it, what chance does the average startup have?
Continue…

second business broadband lineRedundancy is a word many businesses would prefer to avoid, except for those businesses where redundancy means the inclusion of components to safeguard against the failure of vital equipment/services.

For example, radio stations build in redundancy at every level of their business that involves broadcasting their content: back-up microphones in studios; back-up studios; back-up transmission links; back-up power. Having these back-ups in place ensures the station can stay on air when some technology fails.

If your business relies on access to the internet, Nolan Braterman of Frontier Voice and Data argues that you should have a redundancy plan, to ensure your business doesn’t suffer when there is a broadband outage.

Continue…

Tips to choosing the best telephone package for your businessAs a start-up business you have a lot to think about but not a lot of time. Although a phone line and broadband connection are essential, you may feel that ‘all the providers are basically the same’ – so are tempted to just go with the telecoms provider that’s the easiest or the cheapest.

If this is your thinking – you are not alone.

Unfortunately, however, there are many costly traps for the unwary. It’s therefore worth spending a little time considering which telecoms package is right for you and your business – now and throughout the duration of the contract. Continue…

How new technologies affect small businesses

The kind of technological disruptions we are seeing raise questions for businesses of all sizes. What will work be like in the future? How will organisations adapt? How will they navigate their way to the ‘next horizon’?

How small businesses, in particular, respond to the challenges and exploit the benefits of smart technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) will be a key determinant of their success going forward.

So what should you do to make sure your business benefits from new technologies like artificial intelligence, and doesn’t become obsolete? Continue…

How to dispose of old electronicsThe digital age is showing no signs of slowing down and there is now a greater range and scope of technology on the market than ever before.

As the demand for and the production of the latest technology increases, so does the need for efficient and eco-friendly disposal methods of old electronic equipment.

This is just as important for small businesses as it is for large businesses. If you’re a small organisation wanting to understand how you can get rid of your electronic waste efficiently and cost-effectively, read on to discover the world of WEEE recycling and disposal. Continue…

Tips to help you select the right epos or till for your business

Point of sales systems have been around for hundreds of years, and for most of that time they were not much more than a cash drawer and calculator. That was until now – huge leaps in technology have taken the humble till a long way forward in the last few years.

Today, point of sale systems can do so much more. They can feed data on sales straight to your accountant, keep track of stock levels and even find your best sales person.

Not only have all of these features come in with technological advances, but the price of a POS system is also now more affordable, lifting some strain from smaller businesses.

A till has become the cornerstone of a business, and that also means that if it falls short it can also send your business into disarray – so it is important to choose a system that really works for you. Here are some key points to consider when trying to find the right till option for your business. Continue…

employees collaborating document teamwork

From greater productivity and coming up with new and exciting ideas, to boosting morale and motivation, there are lots of advantages to working together. New businesses may be searching for effective and efficient ways to help promote teamwork and one of the best ways to do this is through document collaboration.

Document collaboration has a number of benefits. Most notably, it keeps everyone ‘in the loop’.

The practice makes it easy to see changes, understand processes, and maintain strong communications, both internally and externally. However, while some may think of collaboration as being simple, getting it right can be tricky.

So to help you get it right first time, we asked, author and document management specialist, Kent Raju to share his tips on how startups and small businesses can successfully collaborate on documents: Continue…

how to choose right phone system for your business

As internet access becomes increasingly universal, more and more businesses are turning to cloud phone systems (also known as PBX, virtual or internet phone systems and VoIP) instead of traditional landlines.

The benefits of a cloud phone system are numerous – they’re more flexible, allowing team members to make and receive calls without being tied to their desk, and they’re often more cost-effective for smaller businesses.

If you’re thinking of moving to a cloud phone system, or setting up your first business phone system, this guide will help you to work out which features you’ll need, and what to look out for when choosing a phone system supplier. Continue…

signing telecoms contract agreement

To some extent we are all caught in a telecoms trap. Whether you are in services, retail, or manufacturing your start-up or small business must have some form of telecoms.

This gives some suppliers an opportunity to bamboozle customers with jargon and complicated long-term contracts. It can even get to the point where when you have a query and consider moving supplier you are promptly told, “sorry you are still under contract.”

But are you really always bound by such a contract, and do you have any options to get out of a telecoms contract you aren’t happy with?

We asked Dave Millett of independent telecoms brokerage, Equinox,  to give you the inside-track on business telecoms contracts; Continue…

The Future of Business – 20 Key Trends leaders should know (Trends 11-20)

May 16, 2017

Part 2 of; The Future of Business – 20 Key Trends leaders should know. 

Telecoms mistakes to avoid when starting a business in 2017

March 14, 2017

Over 600,000 business were started in the UK in 2016, and that number is expected to be exceeded in 2017. There are many challenges for every one of these business start-ups, but some new businesses make it harder for themselves by making basic mistakes with their telecoms.

Why “Artificial Intelligence first” is replacing the “mobile first” approach in 2017

March 2, 2017

You don’t have to think back very far to remember the time when disruptive start-ups and forward thinking businesses were championing a “digital first” strategy. Digital technology had been adopted by mainstream consumers and companies that failed to recognise it were being left behind. More recently, that slogan has been replaced for many businesses by […]

Can dual sim phones solve a common problem for small business owners?

February 28, 2017

As the name suggests, a dual sim phone allows you to have two sims in a single phone. There are a variety of reasons why people may want access to two different phone numbers on a single device. A dual sim phone could be of particular use to self employed people, freelancers and business owners […]

Embracing technological opportunities – how SMEs can adopt new technologies without being overtaken by them

February 7, 2017

Technological innovation is happening ever more rapidly and the changes will transform every industry. Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) can benefit from these innovative technologies but must strike a balance between using technology and being overwhelmed by it. To help business owners embrace the potential of new technologies we asked Rohit Talwar, editor of, […]

Is my business data safer in the cloud? A guide for small businesses

January 26, 2017

IT security has never been a bigger issue for startups and SMEs, with 3 in 5 digital firms likely to experience service failures by 2020 due to improper mitigation of risk. It comes at a time when small businesses are increasingly being targeted by hackers keen to exploit network vulnerabilities, and access their data. Ensuring the security […]

How to defend your small business from ‘Insider Threats’

January 19, 2017

As a small business, one of the biggest threats to your information assets resides within your operatin. The insider threat, intentional or otherwise, is now one of the major concerns in cybersecurity, and with good cause. So what exactly are the insider threats to small businesses, and how can you mitigate the dangers? We asked […]

7 cybersecurity issues small businesses need to understand

January 16, 2017

Security breaches and cybercrime incidents hit the headlines in 2016, as high-profile news of data breaches, malware, DDoS attacks and compromised systems became mainstream news. The news reports inevitably focused on cyber-attacks on major corporations, such as the data thefts from TalkTalk, Three and Tesco Bank, as well as the extraordinary autumn story of the […]

Why small businesses must stay on top of web application security

December 9, 2016

Nearly 6,000 retail sites were recently compromised by credit-card theft, after attackers injected malicious JavaScript code into their e-commerce websites to steal payment card data. While compared to the 500 million user details breached at Yahoo it may seem but a small number, however this hack has highlighted the significant risk that cybercrime poses to […]

Getting your IT right as your startup grows

November 29, 2016

Small businesses often begin when an entrepreneur brings an idea to life on a laptop at the kitchen table. At this point, the entire IT infrastructure of the business is likely to be the computer and the software it’s running. But things can grow very quickly. As your startup grows, the size and complexity of […]

How to master your inbox in five simple steps

November 21, 2016

The inbox has changed from an exciting place where anyone from anywhere in the world can reach you within seconds to a daily burden where tasks disappear under the onslaught of new emails coming in. Email productivity experts agree that dealing with emails instantly as they appear in our inboxes, decreases productivity. New emails can […]

5 Top small business tools that will save you time, hassle and money

September 27, 2016

If you are starting your own business, you can’t hope to succeed in today’s commercial world without employing good, time-saving technology. Fortunately, there are plenty of low-cost, or even, free tools out there that help small businesses to do those everyday tasks that much quicker and simpler. But, faced with dozens of different tools, the […]

The ways small businesses can protect themselves from hackers

July 22, 2016

In recent years, giant corporations such as eBay, British Airways and Linkedin have fallen victim to hackers accessing their data. That such huge companies can be on the receiving end of data breaches, despite their astronomical IT budgets, shows that without the right protection, no company is safe. So, what does this mean for smaller […]

Turn your website into a deadly selling tool with these 5 steps

April 21, 2016

It’s a jungle out there in the big, bad world of ecommerce. You’re having a hard enough time bringing potential customers to your website in the first place, what with your competitors striving to undercut your prices and outrank you in Google searches. That means when people do visit your site, you want to do […]

Ecommerce trends: What does 2016 have in store for e-tailers?

February 24, 2016

Ecommerce enjoyed a big year in 2015, with figures indicating that online retail sales in the UK topped £60 billion over the 12 months. As consumers become increasingly comfortable with purchasing a wide range of products and services online, and with smartphone-based shopping expected to surge, the coming years are looking even brighter for e-tailers. […]

6 Tips to help you implement contactless payments in your business

February 22, 2016

Since its introduction in the UK just af ew years ago, contactless payments have quickly become a popular way to make low value purchases on debit and credit cards. In October 2015, more than 10 per cent of all card transactions were made by contactless cards ; a year before, the figure was less than […]