Come join us and help raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support!

🍰☕ We’ve got our aprons at the ready again as this Friday we will be taking part in ‘The Worlds Biggest Coffee Morning’ – raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support. ☕🍰

We’d love to see you, so why not pop into Boldmere Computers (118 Boldmere Road, B73 5UB) with a friend for a cuppa and a slice of delicious homemade cake?
We’ll be serving tea, coffee, soft drinks and a range of baked goodies from 10am – 1pm so don’t miss out!

All proceeds will go to Macmillan Cancer Support
To find out more about the wonderful work they do visit their website: https://www.macmillan.org.uk/

We hope to see you there!

LAUNCH OF A NEW WEBSITE FOR THE FRESH LETTUCE NUTRITION

New Website - The Fresh Lettuce

The Fresh Lettuce are a local company which offer fresh, healthy, meals made with natural ingredients which are delivered to your door.

Over the last couple of years the company has expanded and they had outgrown their old site. They wanted a redesign of their website to showcase their new, updated menu as well as offering a clear and easy way to order their meals.

Our initial consultation with The Fresh Lettuce involved analysing and dissecting their old site. From these results we then developed an in-depth plan for an easy ordering and subscription system.

Looking at statistics from their previous website, mobile devices were the most common device that the website was being viewed on so it was imperative the website worked seamlessly on all devices.

The new website is clean and fresh and really showcases the wide variety of meals they offer as well as promoting the ethos of the business. The Content Management System means that new meals can be added or removed when the menu changes with the few clicks of a button.

The menu is clear and easy to filter based the type of meal you are after or your dietary requirements.

New Website - The Fresh Lettuce
New Website - The Fresh Lettuce

The new website provides calls to action throughout the site, clear images of meals available as well as a much easier ordering and account system.

WHAT IS A DOMAIN NAME?

WHAT IS A DOMAIN NAME?

In the simplest of terms, a domain name is your online address.

As well as looking professional, it can also be used to secure your brand in the online world.

Before we go further, let’s get back to basics…. a domain name consists of two parts: the SLD and TLD

SLD (second level domain)
The SLD can be anything you choose (as long as it’s not already registered by someone else).
Every domain name is unique (just like a fingerprint) so selecting the right domain name can be crucial to your site and brands success.

TLD (top level domain)

    • The TLD refers to the last segment of the domain and is used to identify the objective of the company or organisation it’s registered to.

      • .com – Commercial businesses
      • .org – Organisations (often non-profit)
      • .edu – Educational facilities like universities or schools
      • You can also have country-code TLD’s

      • .co.uk – UK
      • .th – Thailand
      • .ca – Canada
      • .au – Australia
      • Industry specific TLD’s are also now available to register, for example:

      • . accountant
      • .builders
      • .cafe
      • .cleaning
      • .florist

 

WHAT DOES A DOMAIN NAME DO?

A domain name is ultimately used for finding and identifying devices on the Internet.

The internet uses IP addresses (a bit like a postal address) to find different locations. As an IP address consists of a series of numbers which, for most of us humans are difficult to remember, domain names were developed and used instead.

Domain names are looked after by hosting companies but you, the client, ultimately owns your domain name so you can move it from one provider to the other as and when you wish.

 

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WEBSITE AND A DOMAIN NAME?

As mentioned, a domain name is a bit like a postal address.

A website is a collection of pages that are uploaded onto your domain. When people type your domain into an internet browser they find your website.

 

WHERE DO EMAIL ADDRESSES COME INTO THIS?

Your domain name can be used across your brand, tying your company emails into the equation for a complete professional look.

Any email address you want can be associated with your domain and would just appear before the @ symbol.

Here’s a little example:

Imagine a man called Pete who has a window repair company.

Pete has registered the domain name peteswindowrepairs.co.uk and wants to set up different email addresses for the different departments in the company.

He decides to have info@peteswindowrepairs.co.uk for general enquires, accounts@peteswindowrepairs.co.uk for the accounts department and pete@peteswindowrepairs.co.uk for his own, personal email address.

 

WHAT SHOULD I CONSIDER WHEN LOOKING FOR A DOMAIN?

SHORT & SWEET
If your domain is long and complicated it will be harder for people to remember and ultimately find you.
Keep it short and sweet!

AVOID NUMBERS AND HYPENS
Numbers are difficult, the number 5 can be displayed as the numeral 5 or the word five.
Hyphens are also complicated and are often missed out when typing a web address – meaning the people looking for you won’t be able to find you.

ALWAYS GO FOR A .COM OR .CO.UK (WHERE POSSIBLE!)
There are many domain name extensions available but the .com or .co.uk are your safest option. According to W3Techs.com 46.9% of the worlds websites use the .com extension, the stats can’t be wrong!

PROTECT YOUR BRAND
To help protect your brand you should also consider registering different variations of your domain.
If you currently have a .co.uk domain why not see if the .com is still available?

LOOK AT KEYWORDS
Look at keywords that define what you do. Lets go back to Pete and his window repair company. He brainstorms a few ideas around the keywords he would use to describe his business and also decides to register quickwindows.co.uk as well.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP?

Here at web function we are passionate about helping you find the right domain name for your business.

If you’ve already got an idea of the domain you would like or don’t know where to start, just get in touch and we can help on your new online journey.

OPTIMISE YOUR BUSINESS PRODUCTIVITY WITH HOSTED EMAIL

Two decades of triumph have shaped Microsoft’s reputation as the worlds number one business email platform.

Upgrading your email environment is not only a technological requirement, it’s also mandatory to stay safe and protected in a world of communication currently dominated by email.

Here at Web Function we understand how important a reliable email solution is to our clients which is why we are in the process of upgrading all of our customers over to the Microsoft Office 365 platform.

 

WHAT TYPE OF ACCOUNT DO I HAVE?

The chances are that if you haven’t upgraded your email system in the last few years and are unsure of what type of email account you have, it’s probably either a POP3 or IMAP account.

The original POP (Post Office Protocol) account was first introduced in 1984, developing to POP3 in 1988 as technology developed.

POP3 allows an encrypted connection but still has very limited functionality compared to today’s standards, with IMAP being presented a short while later.

Even though POP3/IMAP should have retired a long time ago it’s still a commonly used email system, especially between home users and small/medium sized businesses.

Back in the mid 1990s, Microsoft introduced the Microsoft Exchange Server, giving corporate level email functionality to businesses of any size. However due to the high expense of the initial hardware, coupled with the running costs and necessary licencing, a lot of smaller companies kept their emails at the more basic and cheaper POP3/IMAP level.

However these times have changed drastically with Microsoft’s’ hosted mailboxes – providing you with all of the features of an Exchange server but without the cost of the initial outlay or running costs.

You just pay for the mailboxes you need, adding more when required and removing extra ones if somebody leaves the company!

Compared to the older POP3 and IMAP standards you really can’t compete! So, whats the difference?

 

POP3

  • Various configuration details required
  • Emails stored on each device available offline
  • Intermittent connectivity issues
  • Risk of losing your email data, contacts and calendar if your computer fails or is stolen
  • Sent items/deleted items visible only on device used to send or delete email
  • No sync between devices (emails downloaded on each device are shown as new)
  • No contact, calendar, or data syncing
  • Limited support available
  • Low level of mobile support

IMAP

  • Emails available offline and online
  • Sent items/deleted items visible only on device used to send or delete email, unless specially configured
  • Enables low level of sync between devices (Inbox only)
  • Limited support available

OFFICE 365

  • Emails available offline and online
  • Full support available
  • Message trace-ability and spam filtering
  • 50GB mailbox as standard
  • Higher retention and connectivity rate
  • More reliable and newer technology
  • Advanced security features
  • Built in mailbox protection
  • Sent items/deleted items fully synchronised and visible on all devices
  • Mail system independent from web hosting and 99.9% uptime guaranteed
  • Supported by the majority current mobile devices
  • Calendar, contacts and notes all fully synchronise items (e.g. calendar, contacts, or inbox) can be shared between colleagues
  • Synchronised account access available on any internet connected device

 

HOW CAN WE HELP?

If your current email system is hosted by Web Function we will be in touch over the next few months to arrange your migration. If you are interested in this service or have any questions just call us on 0121 355 4474 or click here to find out more.

DOES MY WEBSITE NEED TO BE SECURE?

Historically website security was primarily aimed at complex sites that took online payments or gathered personal information. However, as the the worlds online footprint increases so do the security measures you need to take to make sure you and your visitors are protected.

Google have recently launched their new browser Chrome 68, which will alert users if your site does not have a secure connection. With Google Chrome now far surpassing its competitors as the most popular internet browser, with 59% of the online population now using it, if you decide not to upgrade your site the chances are it will be having a negative impact on your audience.

WHAT IS HTTPS?
Simply put both HTTP and HTTPS are what is used to transmit data between the user and your website, helping protect your site against online attacks as well as assisting in ranking you higher in the search engines.

The difference with HTTPS is that you are providing a high level of security for your visitors, ensuring that the connection between your website and their device is secure, so should anyone tried to access the data that was being transmitted between the two parties they won’t be able to.

IS MY WEBSITE ALREADY SECURE?
You may not know if your website is secure or not.

One quick way to find out is to view your website in Google Chrome. If you look at the left hand side of the address bar and see a message saying: ‘Secure’ then you can sit back and relax! However if it says ‘Not Secure’ we would strongly recommend you get it sorted.

A BRIEF RUNDOWN OF WHY YOUR SITE NEEDS TO BE SECURED
1. FOR YOUR WEBSITE USERS securely transferring information from your website to their devices (and vice versa).

2. FUTURE PROOFING for what the search engines and internet browsers expect you to do.

3. POSITIVE RANKING FROM THE SEARCH ENGINES the majority of first page results displayed on Google have a strong correlation with sites that have HTTPS.

4. INCREASED CUSTOMER CONFIDENCE a website showing as insecure can have a negative impact on your visitors.

HOW DO I GO ABOUT GETTING A SECURE SITE?
All that you need to do is call us.

Our premium level hosting includes HTTPS as standard as well as faster loading times, firewall protection and much more.

We can advise on whether or not your site is already secure and the process involved in getting it there. It’s as simple as that!

GDPR and your website – what you need to know to comply

You may have heard about The General Data Protection Regulation (or GDPR as it’s more commonly known) coming into force on the 25th May 2018.

GDPR is a new EU regulation aimed at helping strengthen data protection for EU citizens and the wider world and will change the way that personal data is stored.

If you have a website the chances are you will need to implement some changes.

Two of the most popular ways to do this are to ensure your website has a valid SSL Certificate installed and your sites Privacy Policy is up to date and complies with the new legislation.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO?

Companies that fail to comply with the new GDPR regulations by the 25th May 2018 run the risk of being fined up to 4% of their total business annual turnover if there is a breach.

We are not legal experts and cannot advise you on all aspects of GDPR and the ways in which it may effect your business, but we do know what security measures you need in place on your website to help protect your business, customers and their data.

HOW CAN WE HELP?

The actual GDPR legislation contains over 200 pages of documentation – so this is by no means a detailed guide of the law but more like a few tips to help get you started.

SSL CERTIFICATE

If you have any of the following on your website we recommend you have an SSL Certificate installed:
E commerce functionality (an online shop)

  • Web forms
  • A client login area
  • A Content Management System

An SSL Certificate will ensure that the website is labelled as secure within the browser, as well as displaying a green padlock.

This not only complies with the new GDPR legislation but also helps to meet Google’s guidelines and also help improve a websites rankings within Google.

We can ensure that your SSL Certificate is installed correctly on your whole website, including the login area as well as creating a Privacy Policy for your site

Please be aware that some third party suppliers only link an SSL certificate to the homepage and the form page, compromising the security of your site and not complying to Googles best practices.

PRIVACY POLICY

A big part of GDPR is communicating to your customers how you collect their data and why you use it.

So your website Privacy Policy is the perfect place to tell them!

Be clear and concise and give them a way to request a copy of the data you hold on them or have it deleted if they wish.

EMAIL MARKETING

If you use email marketing GDPR also applies to you, here are a few tips on what you’ll need to do…
You will only be allowed to send these messages to people who have opted-in to receive your messages.
The signup process must inform subscribers about the brand that’s collecting the consent and provide information about the purposes of collecting personal data.
If you already have a database of email addresses you target we would recommend sending a campaign allowing users to opt-out before 25th May 2018.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT GDPR HERE: www.eugdpr.org

If you have any questions about how it will effect your business we would love to help – feel free to give us a call.

Why does my website need to be responsive?

Many of you may be wondering what a responsive website is? In short, it refers to a website that is able to resize itself depending on the screen in which it is being viewed such as desktops, tablets and mobile devices.

Why is this important?

In today’s world a responsive website is imperative. Websites are now viewed across a multitude of devices, results from a recent OfCom report state that in the UK smartphones are now used more than desktops or laptops when searching the internet and that on average adults are spending up to two hours a day, online, on their smartphone.

In 2015 Google updated their algorithm which shock the web development industry and changed the way responsive websites were viewed. The update – referred to as Mobilegedon meant that websites which were not responsive were doomed in terms of organic listings on Google – no matter how much SEO was in place.

In the past companies would have two separate website – one to be viewed on desktops and laptops and one for specially for mobile devices. Responsive websites allow your site to adjust to the size of the screen and although it may take slightly longer to initially configure, it will save you time and money in the long run as only one site needs to be updated.

We all know that first impressions count – and this is no different when it comes to your website. Think of it as a shop window, naturally we are attracted to the best-looking window display. The same principle applies to your website. It is the difference between someone clicking off your website or continuing and converting into a customer. If you have a poorly designed/developed website then it’s more likely for them to leave. This could result in your competitors who have invested time and money into their online presence gaining the customer. Often your website is usually the first experience a consumer gets from your business.

So, if your current website isn’t yet responsive we would strongly recommend you getting one. If you need a web designer and web developer then look no further. We pride ourselves in our knowledge of design, development and responsiveness.