Latest web news that could affect your business now or in the future...
Amazon.com open up worldwide distribution centres for use by independent sellers!
If you're an independent seller that sells products online on your own website, on eBay, wherever - you can now let Amazon take care of the shipping and packaging for you. You can even send Amazon stock to store for you, ready to ship when the orders come in. How? Through Amazon's Web Services intiative - which includes the Fulfillment program. You will effectively pay for shipping twice, however, it saves costs like needing your own warehouse and staff to manage that warehouse!
Full Story here > http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/27/technology/27amazon.html?_r=2&ref=technology&oref=slogin&oref=slogin
Google Base and Froogle renamed to Google Product Search
Do you advertise using Google Base? Search for shopping using Froogle? Well you'll now be needing to use Google Product Search instead - as that's the new name for it. They've redesigned the site too - it now resembles the main Google search a lot more closely. Head on over to http://www.google.co.uk/products to try it out!
Full Story > http://news.com.com/2100-1038_3-6177393.html?part=rss&tag=2547-1023_3-0-5&subj=news
They've brought us free online writing and spreadsheet tools, now it's presentations...
Google is to add free online presentation software to it's Google Apps suite, by the summer of this year. Google Docs and Spreadsheets has already seen massive success - allowing users to write and collaborate with other users on word processing and spreadsheet documents, anywhere in the world, as everything is saved on Google's servers. Now it's time for presentation's as well, as Google seems to be taking on Microsoft in it's own backyard - Microsoft Office and especially Powerpoint needs to watch out!
Full story > http://www.usatoday.com/tech/products/software/2007-04-17-google-presentation_N.htm
Friday, 27 April 2007
Latest web news that could affect your business now or in the future...
Wednesday, 21 March 2007
On the 1st January 2007, a new law came into place affecting what statutory information registered UK companies MUST HAVE on their websites. This affects all limited companies, whether they are private or public.
A website now must contain the following information - company registration number, place of registration and registered office address. This information MUST ALSO be included on email footers and order forms too.
Now part of Tippabush's standard process when developing a new website for a limited company, you can guarantee that all the above information will be put into the footer of your website - as it's displayed at the bottom of every page this makes it easy to access.
For further information on this new law, read this excellent source.
Monday, 12 March 2007
The subject of this next post is yet another aimed at educating business owners and other people on a slightly more technical aspect of web design, but one that is asked about a lot by new clients after a launch of a new website or during the testing phase of a project. If the word technical has put you off reading any further, please don't go...it really is a basic subject and we're sure you'll learn something by the time you've finished reading. It certainly is "stuff you need to know".
That subject is the question - "why doesn't my website fill the entire screen?".
The answer is a display setting on your computer called "screen resolution".
What is screen resolution?
Well, it's simply the number of pixels that your monitor can output on a particular setting. A pixel is a unit of measurement that defines accuracy of an electronic display, you'll see it used in descriptions of LCD televisions, and digital cameras (mega-pixels) as well as computer monitors. The higher the number of pixels, the more accurate the image / picture / photo will be.
When it comes to computer monitors, the screen resolution is measured by the number of pixels wide it can go by the number of pixels high it can go. This will be represented by two numbers, width first, height second, for example 1024 x 768.
To find out what your screen resolution is (on a Windows XP computer atleast), right-click on your desktop (that's the main Windows screen, that has your wallpaper on it) and choose "Properties". Then select the "Settings" tab, and in the bottom left of that window it'll tell you - complete with a slider to change it as well.
How does this impact on a website?
Unfortunately for us web designers, there are many factors that can affect the display of our work that are completely out of our control, screen resolution being one of them. This is because it's a local setting on each individual computer / monitor, and just think how many millions / billions of computers there are in the world today!
There are currently about 6 different screen resolution sizes being used... the higher the resolution, the more pixels there are to fit onto the screen, and therefore the smaller a fixed-pixel item (such as a website) will appear, and the more space there will be around it.
How do we get around this problem?
There are three ways of solving the issue.
- To use a fluid web design, or not set any fixed-widths to the items on a website. This option isn't preferred by many, as it doesn't give very good control over how each individual item on a website relates to the item next to it. Often leads to a very "stretched" looking website when viewed on a higher resolution.
- With the majority of websites now developed with stylesheets, or CSS technology, a lot of the larger websites often go for a method that involves detecting which screen resolution the visitor is using, and rendering the web page with a different stylesheet, that determines different widths. Whilst a perfectly suitable option for large website projects with large budgets, due to the longer development and testing time this method requires, costs will always be higher, and makes this an unsuitable option for many start-up and small business websites.
- The preferred method used here at Tippabush, is to build the website to a size that will be viewable by the most users. By going for a smaller size, it is still viewable to those with larger resolutions. Using a larger size, those viewing it on smaller resolutions would end up having to scroll across to view the right-hand side of a website - and this is something that users simply won't do the majority of the time.
Current Screen Resolution Stats
By analysing current statistics, we can tell that designing for 800 x 600 pixels, often called the 800px rule, is the best option. The below statistics were taken from the last two weeks from TheCounter.com.
- 1024 x 768 - 53% of internet users
- 1280 x 1024 - 22%
- 800 x 600 - 13%
- Unknown - 5%
- 1152 x 864 - 3%
Therefore, designing for 800 x 600 means that a website will be viewable by 91% of users (sum of all users using that resolution and everyone above it). This is likely to remain the standard for another few years yet, as people only usually get a higher screen resolution on buying a newer computer, and I would say that 800 x 600 would have to drop to below 10% of internet users, before many web designers start to design mainly for 1024 x 768.
Want to see what we're talking about?
Browse to our website www.tippabush.co.uk, which is designed for 800 x 600, and try reducing and /or increasing your screen resolution as described above (you may well get a warning that your screen will go blank for a few seconds), and see how the size of the website changes.
Another reason for 800 x 600...
Another major reason for designing for this size is what happens when a user decides to print out your website, or a page from it, which many people do for future reference, order confirmations and other reasons.
With any web page designed for a larger resolution, when it's printed, sections from the right-hand side will no doubt be pushed onto another page, wasting paper and annoying users (we've all been there!). However, one designed for 800 pixels wide, fits perfectly onto the width of an A4 sheet of paper.
Again, there are alternatives to control this, which leads us nicely onto our next blog topic...print stylesheets.
Please contact us for any further information on this subject or to make enquiries.
Monday, 12 February 2007
Here's a fine selection of the latest web news that either will or could affect your business on the internet in the coming weeks, months and years...enjoy.
1) Powerset wins exclusive rights to new search engine technology - 09/02/2007
A new, well financed search engine company from San Francisco has won exclusive rights to use "natural language" technology that has been over 30 years in the making at PARC (Palo Alto Research Centre, owned by Xerox). The Powerset search engine, which will be publicly available sometime this year, attempts to understand the user's query as the user intends it, not based on keywords and phrases as Google, MSN etc currently are. They've already got about 40 employees, with many high-profile search engine names leaving Yahoo for the company. Massive potential for this - Google, watch out!
2) Yahoo launches Panama Ad System - 05/02/2007
After months of testing (originally started in October 2006), Yahoo Search Marketing have finally changed over to their new PPC, or pay-per-click, advertising system. Intended to help close the gap on Google's AdWords, Panama offers campaign-based features, better localised targeting and new conversion tracking tools. However they have held off on introducing some 3rd-generation features as seen in Microsoft's AdCenter, launched last year. As if that's not enough, they've also introduced a new ad-ranking system, where by other factors also influence the ad position, not just "highest bidder wins" anymore, also extremely similar as to how AdWords operates.
3) European Mobile Phone Giants plot new mobile search engine - 05/02/2007
With an expected surge in people using search engines on their mobile phones by the end of 2007, all of Europe's biggest operators have commissioned secret top-level talks in Barcelona this week as part of the industry's largest annual trade show (the 3GSM World Congress 2007). Desperate to claw back some of the market from current dominators Google and Yahoo, the group, with a combined world-wide audience of 600 million, are to discuss launching their own search engine, and the possibility of striking a deal with the current market leaders for a slice in advertising revenues.
Tuesday, 30 January 2007
So, if you've read the last post, about the relationship between search engines and websites, we're guessing you now want to know more.
Read on if you want to know why you need search engine optimisation for your business' website, and even if you don't want to know - we suggest you read anyway! The below is taken from an SEO brochure that we give out, please Contact Us if you'd like a hard copy.
1) The Internet, Search Engines and Your Business
An estimated 37.6 million people from the UK are online 1 , over 1 billion the world over - so whether your business is local to Lincoln and Lincolnshire, is regional, national or international, someone somewhere is looking for what you do.
Approximiately 80% of the above internet traffic goes through the search engines (Google, Yahoo, MSN etc) - so to be cost effective you need to put your efforts into ranking highly with these top search engines first!
2) How Tippabush Can Change Your Rankings
A recent report 2 revealed that a staggering 62% of search engine users click on a website on the first page of results, and 90% within the first 3 pages.
Therefore, you MUST be on the first page for your main keywords, and within the first three pages for your secondary keywords.
SEO - The Truth
Don't be fooled by exaggerated claims GUARANTEEING to get your company to the top of the rankings. If the offer seems to good to be true then it probably is.
Our Promise To You
We GUARANTEE to try our best to get you on page 1 of the big three search engines (UK Search Engine Share - Google 74.67%, Yahoo 9.3%, MSN 5.46% - Feb 2006 Source: Web Side Story).
We GUARANTEE to use only legitimate SEO techniques, that will bring short AND long-term results.
We GUARANTEE to be always "upto speed" on the SEO industry.
3) Our SEO Services
An affordable solution for smaller businesses, ideal for new businesses on a limited budget, or where competition for keywords is less intense.
The service includes:
- keyword research and analysis;
- keyword placement and content optimisation;
- keyword density checks;
- internal link development;
- sitemap creation;
- management of a Google Webmaster Tools account;
- a monthly rankings report;
- and an optimised link from our own website.
For the best chance of first page rankings in competitive markets, having related quality links pointing to your site is essential. To give your website a boost, this package is the ideal cost-effective solution.
The service includes -
- all of the basic package above plus;
- creation and development of an external linking and link management campaign;
PLEASE NOTE: WE DO NOT USE AUTOMATED LINK EXCHANGING SOFTWARE. WE ENSURE QUALITY BY DOING EVERYTHING MANUALLY.
If you are not sure which package is right for your business, we can help. For a small fee (refundable when you have an SEO package from Tippabush 3) we will do some initial keyword research and a competitive study before giving you our recommendations.
4) Do We Know What We're Doing?
Try this search on Google "search engine optimisation lincolnshire", and see which company is #1 (at time of writing this post). Yep, it's Tippabush! 1st out of approx. 71,000 pages.
5) Contact Us For A Quote!
Email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call Paul on 07877 800538.
1 - statistics provided by InternetWorldStats.com (18 Sept 2006)
2 - report by iProspect.com dated 11 Apr 2006 - view press release here
3 - both SEO packages consist of an upfront payment for the intial work followed by ongoing monthly fees for reporting and follow-up work