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Web Design Blog

Office on the Go!

Microsoft has just announced the next version of MS Office will be available online. For many businesses this will be a dream come true! From your palmtop to mobile phone, you will be able to open office documents from your email, adjust attachments and work on your own documents, on any web device, at any time. The best thing about this is that it is all completely free!

The next version of Microsoft Office will follow its predecessors in offering Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access. The online version will not feature all the advance settings the new released shop version will have (they still need to make those sales!) but it will have all the standard functions you are used to using in MS Office.

It may not be ideal for those with troublesome internet connections, but for the vast majority, logging into Microsoft via your browser will be a very welcome addition.

Microsoft Office 2010 looks set for release sometime this year, but if you can’t wait that long why not take a look at Google Apps. Google Apps offer a wide range of online programmes from word processors to spreadsheet programmes to help any small business on the go. This isn’t the first time Google have launched a wide range of services to help the little guys, already boasting a wide range of website enhancing products.

Will Microsoft Office online be the competition Google has been waiting for? Only time will tell, but either way it is very good news for the small business!

If you want to start working on pressing emails and attachments, why not take a look at Toolkit Mobile! Allowing you to access your emails, wherever you are!

Toolkit Websites - Southampton Web Design for Business



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What was the web like in 1999?

As you may know Toolkit Websites is celebrating its 10th Birthday. It has been 10 fine years since Toolkit Websites began in infancy as Green Designs. Much like Toolkit Websites, the World Wide Web has grown enormously over those 10 years. So we are taking a little time out to pay homage to the burst of the dot com bubble and the rapidly expanding world of the internet.

So let’s go back to 1999. You might like to get out your brightly coloured Mac G3’s, or your sturdy Compaq Intel III PC’s. Unplug your wireless connection and prepare to dip in and out of an oh so reliable dial up internet as we take a brief look at the history of the internet!
If you want a real blast from the past click on any of the links on this page and it will take you to the homepage, as it was in 1999, try them out!

The dotcom bubble bursts.
The stock market rocketed due to the rapid growth of the internet, This was called the dotcom bubble. Survival in the dotcom world relied heavily in increasing your customer base at a rapid pace. The internet appeared to be the get rich quick dream everyone had been waiting for, but with too many people onboard and motion too fast it came crashing to a halt in May 2000.

Lost in Translation
Lycos, Yahoo and AOL were leading the way with search engine and email. Msn and Email Giant Hotmail were at the top of the leader board

When the dotcom bubble burst and search engines felt they needed to diversify. This was a risky move. They tried adding everything from user profiles to horoscopes on their start up pages and they were no longer seen as a prominent search engine. It is unsurprising that one simple, user friendly search engine managed to quickly leap to the forefront.

In Search of the big dream
Google was in its infancy; founded only in 1998 without any idea of being on the brink the world wide phenomenon it is today. In 1999 Google was in its infancy, and took its first major step in becoming the success it is today, gaining 40 employees by the end of the year, and moving to a more scenic location, out of Susan Wojcicki's garage. Today Google is largest, most widely used search engine in the world. Not only has this but revolutionised the way we use the web. Not bad for a small business!

Growth
In 1999 there was an estimated 1.5 million websites. Last updated in 2007 there is a mammoth 30 billion websites recorded on the World Wide Web by Yahoo. With 46 million websites added to the internet between January and April this year (that’s more than the whole of 2008 put together!) Staying online, keeping contact, and having a website has become more and more essential in everyday life.

Technology certainly has come along! If want to the must have features of a 2009 website, take a look at our brand new services page here.
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Silver, Gold...Chrome? Why Google Chrome may well be the Winner when it comes to Revolutionary Browsers.

Google Chrome is a brand new browser launched by Google and is especially good for those of you operating on the little screen!

Net books, iphones and palmtops will delight in this new mini Google browser! This doesn’t just mean it’s all for the little guys, laptops and PC’s can also benefit hugely from the new micro browser. When describe as mini do not be fooled into thinking that there is anything small about the features of Google Chrome – it combines all the current functions of search engine giant Google into a deceivingly small package!

When opening up your browser your web address bar will also function as a search engine tool, bringing up suggested websites for each word you type in. This is just one of the many multi functional attributes of the new browser.

Every time you open a new tab Google Chrome will display a page with all your favourite web pages. Google registers each page you visit frequently and will compile a page of mini web page images for you to simply click and be transported to your favourites!

Have you ever been right in the middle of an important search when your window crashes! Well this could well be a thing of the past with Google Chrome. It is the first search engine browser which allows you to check just how much memory each page you have open is using. If one crashes then every other tab is safe. It will not bring your whole browser down.

In keeping with Windows Explorer 8 and Apple Safari you also have the opportunity to switch off your history, so none of your webs browsing information is stored. This can be done by switching on “incognito mode.” As the title suggests, your browsing remains unseen, which is excellent when viewing private web information, or putting in secure details. In line with this increase in web safety Google Chrome will also alert you immediately if a website you are attempting to access is potentially unsafe.

If you feel like a move of browser seems like too much hassle Google has taken the final step in making the switch over as easy as possible, you can even transfer all your old bookmarks, favourites, and saved information into your new chrome browser. It is certainly worth a try!

For more information on converting to Chrome, click here!

If you want to be sure that you are found by Google Chrome, and other search engines on the website. Make sure you have done all you can to optimize your website. Toolkit Websites now offer an SEO writing service. For more information contact us.

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Ensure Your Emails are Read with the Three Second Rule!

If someone was to ask you what the three second rule is, you may be able to think of one or two things which are not necessarily tied to the worldwide web. But that may be about to change.

Research suggests you only have three seconds to grab someone’s attention as they open their inbox and those three seconds all lie in the hands of your email title? At this point you may feel like donning some suspension cords, breaking a sweat and lowering yourself down to your computer screen to complete a mission impossible.

Three seconds can be a frightening prospect, but it certainly isn’t impossible, and really can increase the amount of mail you send out, that will become top of the reading pile.

Julie Niehoff of Constant Contact has written an excellent article on this very matter. Julie provides these very useful tips in ensuring your emails get read first. We take a brief look at some of Julies suggestions to help you create emails that just have to be read!
  • When writing about many different topics, highlight the most compelling or time sensitive one in the subject line to attract as much attention as possible.
  • Julie states Using numbers to get attention are a great way to grab attention - "For example, "20 Seats Left for Friday," "Top 10 Tax Tips," "5 Green Things to Do Today," "3 Reasons your Jeans Don't Fit," etc. Research suggests email titles containing numbers immediately increase their click rate.
  • Time sensitive terms such as "RSVP," "Today," "This Weekend Only," and words like "few" and "limited" suggest urgency and intrigue. "Now" opportunities can be difficult to resist!
  • Julie states if you're using email marketing to stay in touch with your customer base without a time sensitive message, you should try tying your subject to a current event to give your message a relevant angle. "Tax Time, the Stimulus Package, and you" or "Everyone Is Going Green -- You Can Too" - these work better than "Joe's Pet Store Newsletter," for example.
Just making small changes to the way in which your email titles are worded could make all the difference in ensuring your valuable words don't get lost in the waste bin.

To read the rest of Julie Niehoff's fantastic article on how to get the very best out of your emails click here

If you feel you've got the 3 second rule confidentially under way it may be time to really boost the number of recipients who read your email. To find out more about email marketing click here.
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Facebook Offer Free Fanpage Names

As you may remember, on the 13th of June this year Facebook opened it's doors and allowed all users joining facebook before the 31st May the opportunity to get their very own personalised profile address.

Facebook have now announced that they will be doing exactly the same thing for pages. If like us you have a page especially assigned to your business you can now drive visitors towards it by changing the name in the address bar to cater directly to your business page. For example if your page specialises in promoting free training solutions you may like to change your page address from

www.facebook.com/page=123

to

http://www.facebook.com/freetrainingsolutions


However, if you have less than 1000 fans on your page you will have to wait until June 28th before you can start assigning names to your pages! There will still be plenty of names available to assign.

If you would like help in setting up a facebook page, or would like to discuss the ways in which it might help market your business contact us.

For more information on Facebook usernames click here or to start assigning names to your facebook pages click here now.
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