When a user searches for your business, the data likely comes from one of three business directories. When they search at google.com or Google Maps, whether from a desktop or Android phone, that data comes from Google Places. Searches on Apple maps on iPhone or iPad link directly to Yelp. By default, Internet Explorer uses Bing for searches with is linked to Microsoft’s Bing Business Portal.
In everyday use, these searches have replaced the Yellow Pages.
Search for your business at Google Maps. If it’s there, click on the “Manage this page” button to get started. If it’s not there, go to Google Places and follow the instructions.
At Yelp, you can go to the Claiming page to search for your business. If it’s there, choose “Unlock” and follow instructions. If not, click the “add your business to Yelp button toward the bottom of the page.
Go to the Bing Business Portal Search and search for your business. If your business isn’t found click the link to add a new listing.
These sites will want to verify that you are who to say your are so after you make your changes, they will call you or send you a piece of mail with a confirmation code. Look out for these or your changes won’t go live.
The news has been telling people to disable or update Java for security. This is how:
Follow these instructions: http://www.java.com/en/download/help/disable_browser.xml
Download and run this: http://ninite.com/java/ninite.exe
17 inch desktop replacement laptops are great until you have to move them. They have the tendency to flex under their own weight and require extra protection and briefcases large enough to accommodate them are unwieldy. The best strategy is to get a well built sleeve that holds only the laptop. For this, I recommend the Tom Bihn Brain cell. If you still need room for other accessories, there are other options but the Tom Bign is still my top choice.
It’s really simple but it’s solid, does it’s job and (most importantly) its easy to get your computer in and out with one hand. Use the “Fit List” to pick a size. ($60)
I see people spending a lot of time looking for things they should just be “searching” for. Give this a try and see if this makes things easier
On Windows Vista and Windows 7 machines, instant search is available directly from the start menu. When you want to open a program, instead of digging through the programs list, just hit the Windows key to open the start menu (the one with the Windows logo on the bottom row of your keyboard) then just type some of the name of the program and it will show up in the list. If what you want is on the top of the list, just hit enter. Otherwise, you can just click on the program you want. This also works for documents.
Example: To open “Excel,” hit the Windows key and type “exc” and hit enter.
On typical home computer, I need to make sure the following are installed and up to date:
- Google Chrome
- Adobe Air
- Adobe Reader
- Microsoft Security Essentials
Before Ninite, this was a task that would take an hour or so of going to each program’s website, downloading, and manually installing them one by one. With Ninite, you can choose them all from a list, download a single file, and install them all without any intervention. It amounts to one minute of work and 20 minutes of waiting. Periodically, you can just use the original installer file and it will update all programs to the most current version.
You’ll notice that synchronization is one of my biggest themes. This touches a bit on organization as well.
Bookmarks (or Favorites) in a browser are useful for sites you go back to often but for articles you want to save and read later, a better solution is needed. My favorite solution to this problem is Pocket (getpocket.com)
Pocket is a web site, a mobile app, and a bookmarklet that work in conjunction to add any page you find on the web to your reading list. After you make an account, you are given instructions on how to had a link (a bookmarklet) to your browser to automatically save the current page into your reading list. Later, you can log into getpocket.com and find all of your articles, reformatted for readability, and marked either read or unread. You can save them indefinitely in your archive or delete them as your read them. Another bonus is that once you open the mobile app they are downloaded to the device so you can read them offline (like on an airplane)
This is the short version. If you are at work and see a article you want to read, click on the bookmarklet and later that night you can read it reformatted on your iPad, in the park. …and now you don’t have to clog your bookmarks with articles you’ll never get around to reading.
With a land line, many computer and all-in-one printers are capable of sending and receiving faxes. Even without a land line, there are many paid services including eFax and InterFAX which allow you to send and receive faxes from your computer.
If you only send the occasional fax and don’t need to receive them, FaxZero allow you fax a document for free without even having to set up an account. There is one catch; there’s an ad on the cover page. For $2.00, though, you can send a fax without an ad.
Dropbox makes it very easy to share folders with others. If you aren’t familiar with Dropbox or need help installing it, click here. If you already have Dropbox, this is a good strategy for sharing files with multiple colleagues and clients without it getting confusing. Bear with me a bit.
- Inside your Dropbox folder, make a folder called “Shares” or something similar to keep them separate from your other files.
- Inside that folder, make a new folder and name it after yourself our your business.
- Right click on that folder and, under “Dropbox,” choose “Share this Folder.”
- Your browser should pop up and ask you the email addresses of person or people with whom you would like to invite.
- Now go back to the folder in your Dropbox and find the folder that was named after your self (the one we just shared) and rename it to the name of the person to whom it was shared.
Now, the reason for naming the folder after yourself, sharing it, and then renaming it, is because of this: the invitation sent to your client will call the folder whatever it was named when you sent the invitation. So, you should name it what you think it should in THEIR folder before you share it, then rename it to what you want it to be in YOUR folder after you’ve sent the invitation. They will have a folder with your name and you will have a folder with their name.
The the invitation will be sent over email and if they already have a Dropbox account, they will just accept the invitation. If they don’t have an account, it will show them how to make one. If they need any help with that, you can send them a link to this.
Given that we all have multiple computers and mobile devices to manage, one thing that makes working easier is having all of your important files available to you regardless of what device you are using. With a file synchronization service, you are able to save a document to your computer and automatically have it synchronize to a server and, in turn, any other device using that same account. Right now there are many competing services that can do this (including Google Drive and Microsoft Skydrive) but currently, Dropbox has the largest user base. Skydrive and Google drive give you more storage for free but no one uses them yet. When one of them becomes more popular, switching will be easy.
To get Dropbox, click HERE to make a free account and follow the instructions. After you make an account, you can install the Dropbox utility and install it on your computer. Once installed, anything copied into the your “Dropbox” folder will instantly and automatically be copied to the server. Once you install the DropBox utility on your other computers and your phone, those same files can be accessed from there as well.