SEO Tips to Help Improve Rankings for Small Business

SEO Tips to Help Improve Rankings for Small Business
You might have a great website – but do enough people know about it? Do you have a website that doesn’t seem to contribute much to your business or are thinking of developing a new online business? Chances are that you’re looking for ways to promote your website, call us now and let us show you how to attract qualified visitors to your website. Well, how do you optimise your website to attract the traffic you want?

SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is the practice of improving the level of traffic of your website through the use of targeted keywords that are likely to be searched by customers searching for the products or services your business offers. Even if your website looks attractive and is beautifully designed, if it is not optimised properly then it will be unlikely to attract traffic and it is not going to help your business as much as it could without some basic SEO optimisation.

Your small business can do the following simple SEO techniques to improve its ranking on the search engines:

Determine your target audience & Key Phrase

This is the first step in your SEO campaign. Always identify the intended target audience of your website and select a keyword or key phrase that this audience will likely use to search for your products. Then set up page content based on this keyword or key phrase to ensure the page or website is ‘relevant’ to the targeted key phrase.

Produce unique content for your website constantly

Look to write unique and informative articles, blogs etc for your website.  Original and interesting content will be valued by your visitors and provide visitors with a reason to remain (and hopefully return) to your website.  This ‘valued content’ will help generate ongoing interest in your website, helping increase the potential for a sale. Providing value to the visitor will result in a higher ‘ROI’ for your business via your website.

Have your business listed in Google Local Business Listing.

This is a free feature offered by Google where you can create additional links so people can easily find your site, therefore your web traffic will be increased.  Signing up is easy and quick, you only need to provide your business name, address, contact information, etc. You also can get linked by listing with other online directories like Chamber of Commerce and local business directories.

 Arrange for Quality and Relevant links back to your website

Inbound links are considered very important in the SEO world, particularly by Google.  If you have decent quality and relevant links directed back to your website, your ranking on search engines will be enhanced.  Using directories, suppliers, social networks sites can offer a free and quick way to start with creating back links to your site. Note that some more ‘notable’ directories may require fee to generate a link. Do not use link farms or the like as these will probably be noticed by the Search Engines and get your website banned or penalised.

Promote your Website URL Offline

Always include your website address on stationary, on marketing materials and on company vehicles. This is a sure fire way to help achieve continuous promoting of the website address.

All businesses should explore and utilise their website to work well in the Search Engines. If your site is properly optimised for the search engines you can attract more traffic, your business can easily be found by potential clients, and you will hopefully achieve more sales for your business.

Specialising in Internet Marketing Services, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Pay per Click (PPC) online marketing and over the past decade we have built up a loyal client base. The depth and breadth of knowledge we have built up helps set us apart in an increasingly competitive and crowded SEO market place.

With in excess of 10 years of online marketing experience, we know which techniques work and are always researching new methods to stay one step ahead of the competition. We do all of this and more on your behalf.

To speak to one of our Internet Marketing Consultants for advice on making your Web Marketing project a success, call us now on  0845 272 2350  or visit the Direct Submit SEO Services website today and get your FREE SEO review.

O2 Service ‘Back to Normal’ After Network Problems

O2 Service ‘Back to Normal’ After Network Problems
Phone provider O2 has said its service is “back to normal” after customers complained of problems with reception in several parts of the UK. The company has apologised after people in areas including London, Manchester, Bristol, Glasgow and parts of Northern Ireland said they had lost signal.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid was among those expressing frustration on Twitter, asking O2 to “sort it out”.

O2 said an investigation into the cause of the problem had been launched. A spokesman said “some customers experienced some problems accessing our network” and that the service had returned to normal at 23:35 BST on Monday. He added: “We apologise for any inconvenience caused to those customers affected and we will now begin a full investigation to identify the root cause.”

Many O2 customers had taken to social media complaining of not being able to send or receive calls and text messages, as well as problems with the 3G internet signal. While the problems were ongoing, it had advised people to reset their device, and visit its support page if problems persisted.

O2 said it was continuing to monitor the situation and was working with its suppliers to investigate how the signal failure occurred.

Media and technology analyst Matthew Howett told BBC Breakfast the fact that O2 had advised customers to turn their phones off and on again suggested “a problem with registering with the network”. He said while it was still unclear what had caused the issue, “a piece of software not doing its job properly” could have been to blame.

Sound Testing in London

Sound Testing in London
London is a massive city containing over 5 million properties. In this overcrowded environment it is essential that noise transference between properties in kept to an absolute minimum for the occupant’s wellbeing.

We undertake UKAS accredited Part E sound testing throughout London. We have extensive knowledge regarding the way different materials and construction methods can influence the results of a sound test, to ensure your company achieves complies with Sound Testing Regulations Part E.

Pre completion sound testing under part E has been a mandatory requirement since July 2003. All new build properties and conversions which were built after this date require 10% of each party wall/floor construction type to be tested. Sound Testing is to be carried out between pairs of rooms separated by party walls or floors. In usual circumstances the room/s to be sound tested will be the living rooms and bedrooms, which are classed as the two main habitable rooms.
The sound test procedure involves setting up a noise source in a room on one side of the party wall or floor and measuring the noise on both sides of the partition.

Airborne sound tests may also be required between horizontally and vertically separated pairs of rooms. The sound tests are undertaken by using a sound source, amplifier and loudspeaker to generate a high noise level in one room (the source room). Noise measurements are then taken in both the source and receiver rooms using a prescribed number of source and microphone positions. The background levels in the receiver room are measured and the reverberation time in the receiver room is also measured. From the results, the airborne sound insulation (DnT,w + Ctr) is calculated and compared to the requirements of Approved Document E.

For vertically separated rooms, an Impact sound test may also be required. This sound test is undertaken using a tapping machine which drops a series of weights onto the floor of the upper room. The noise level in the lower (receiver) room is measured for a prescribed number of source and microphone locations. The background levels in the receiver room are measured and the reverberation time in the receiver room is also measured. From the results, the impact sound insulation (LnT,w) is calculated and compared to the requirements of Approved Document E.

Our sound test engineers carry all the latest Norsonic equipment, which are class one rating and all of our acoustic testing/sound testing, is completed to a strict quality controlled standard. We provide full UKAS Accredited sound testing.

Pre-completion sound testing is generally carried out at the request of the Building Control Officer. The guidance contained within Approved Document E gives detailed recommendations for the partitions to be tested and for the number of sound tests that should be carried out. We recommend that the proposed sound testing is agreed in advance with the Building Control Officer prior to the London sound testing.

We can undertake both acoustic airborne sound testing to allow for speech, television etc, and impact sound testing to allow for footfall etc. This is in accordance with the requirements of Approved Document E of The Building Regulations and the relevant European and International standards.

The testing methods for airborne and impact sound insulation testing in London are in full accordance with: the suggested methods presented in BS EN ISO 140-parts 4 and 7: 1998.

If you are in the construction stage of a new project and are not sure if your design will pass the building regulations then contact us at and we will check your sound testing, acoustic design and offer additional advice (if required) for the wall or/and floor partitions. Alternatively if you require sound testing for your London project please contact us now.

Apple Agrees to Settle Legal Case with Battery Maker

Apple Agrees to Settle Legal Case with Battery Maker
Apple has agreed to settle a case brought over claims it poached staff from a firm that makes batteries for electric cars, court documents show. The iPhone-maker was accused of targeting engineers from A123 in mid-2014 as it sought to build a large-scale battery unit.

It denied the claim when a suit was filed in a court in the Massachusetts federal court in February this year.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed in court papers. The agreement in principle was disclosed in the papers filed by the battery-maker, which is based in Waltham, Massachusetts. The two parties are said to be working out the final details.

A123 claimed that, in about June 2014, Apple began aggressively poaching its engineers who were leading some of the company’s most critical projects. Apple denied the claims.

In March, Apple unsuccessfully applied to have the case thrown out, claiming that it was based “solely on labels and conclusions” that weave “an elaborate but ultimately incorrect and unsupportable theory”, the Wall Street Journal reported. According to the newspaper, the discussions had been going on since late March and court documents show that A123 has repeatedly filed for permission to delay since then. Apple was also asking for the case to be moved closer to its California base.

A123 Systems is a pioneering industrial lithium-ion battery-maker, which was backed by a $249m (£158m) US government grant. It filed for bankruptcy in 2012 and has been selling off assets.

Apple refused to comment, while A123 did not respond.

China Reveals Ambitious Broadband Plan

China Reveals Ambitious Broadband Plan
China is to accelerate the development of its high-speed broadband network to raise speeds but cut prices, its State Council has said. Fewer than half of the country’s population has internet access and those who do can often experience slow connections. The country’s premier also urged telecoms companies to cut fees, including data roaming charges. It was not revealed how much money would be invested.

Besides the government investment, Premier Li Keqiang also urged telecoms companies to cut their prices and up their speeds, according to China’s cabinet the State Council. He also said they should cut data roaming charges for Chinese tourists, although he acknowledged that it was ultimately for the market to decide.

He did, however, announce a round of investment infrastructure improvements to the same end.

“China has more cell-phone users than any other country, but its internet service speed ranks below 80th in the world due to underdeveloped information infrastructure,” the premier said, according to a release from the State Council. He added that “speeding up the construction of information infrastructure will boost investment and support” in China, as well as helping “mass innovation”.

Telecoms firms should make rapid moves to cut prices and increase urban broadband speeds by around 40%, according to Mr Li.

China’s investment in broadband could benefit global network equipment makers such as Ericsson and Nokia Oyj’s Alcatel-Lucent, as well as home-grown players like Huawei Technologies and ZTE.

Mr Li did not say how much investment would be needed, but officials have previously earmarked around 2tn yuan ($322bn, £204bn) to improve China’s broadband infrastructure by 2020.

China’s internet penetration rate was only 47.9% last year, with connectivity especially low in smaller cities and rural areas. This compares with about 75% of people in the United States. In the UK, 73% of households have broadband access, Ofcom said in December 2014.

The Chinese cabinet’s statement added that the nation would look to open up the telecoms market and encourage increased competition, including through expanding a pilot scheme for broadband services this year. “There is still not enough competition, which has led to telecoms fees being relatively high while there is still a lot of room to improve the quality of service,” the statement said, citing an official at China’s official State Information Centre.

OECD Attacks Aggressive Tech Tax Plans

OECD Attacks Aggressive Tech Tax Plans
Technology companies need to stop “extremely aggressive” tax planning, the man charged with reforming global tax rules has told the BBC. He says these “push the boundaries of what is legal”.

Pascal Saint-Amans, who runs the OECD’s Centre for Tax Policy, said that new standards would require companies to pay more tax in the countries where they sold goods or created revenues. He also said companies should not use tax havens to shelter their profits.

Mr Saint-Amans’ intervention comes after years of complicated negotiations and endless summits on reforming the toxic issue of where large multi-national companies pay their taxes. He revealed that there should be international agreement on new tax laws ready for the G20 summit of global leaders in November. The implementation phase should then mean the rules are in place “well before” 2020. And, according to Mr Saint-Amans, that should mean technology companies such as Facebook, Apple and Google paying more tax to the UK Treasury. They will also be required to pay more tax in a number of other countries and publish, country-by-country, how much they pay.

The UK has already agreed new rules on the taxation of multi-nationals – called the “diverted profits tax”. The government predicts that companies such as Google – operating in the UK but paying tax in other jurisdictions – will already be obliged to pay hundreds of millions of pounds more tax in Britain.

Mr Saint-Amans agrees, and says that the UK rules will have to be “co-ordinated” with the OECD agreements. In his interview, Mr Saint-Amans is clear on what he thinks about technology giants which move profits around the world to gain preferable tax rates. “Most of these companies have been extremely aggressive, pushing the boundaries of what is legal,” he said. “They have tried schemes that cannot resist further examination by tax administrations. My advice would be instead of focusing on tax planning, please do the wonderful job you are doing on innovation and be much more conservative on tax planning. They have been extremely aggressive and that may have sounded unfair to the audience – that you have giants making billions in profits and not paying taxes where they operate.”

The technology companies that have been targeted by tax campaigners say that they follow all the rules laid down by governments. What is obvious is that the modern world of global digital companies has left national tax systems struggling.

Although much of the revenue for these firms may be created in a country such as the UK, the intellectual property (the profitable bit) is actually based elsewhere, often the US, and the “sales” undertaken in a more favourable tax location such as Ireland, the Netherlands or Luxembourg.

That leaves the national “marketplace” without much tax to collect.

“The marketplaces should have something,” Mr Saint- Amans said. “They have been left with hardly anything. I think it is changing through the project we are conducting. [We will be asking multi-nationals] where is your turnover, where are your profits, where are your employees, where do you pay your taxes? This information will be collected by all the countries – that is a game changer.”

The technology companies say that it is for governments to decide how they tax businesses, not them, and that they have not broken tax rules. That is an opinion Mr Saint-Amans has some sympathy with. I ask him whether the problem has actually been created by the policymakers rather than the companies themselves.

“You are 100% right,” he replied. “The blame should be put on governments which have over the past 20 years let the rules shift away from what should have been achieved. We didn’t update the rules. We unfortunately needed a crisis to have this wake-up call to say we need to change because it is outdated. Now, governments have decided to move. It shows that when you have political support you can achieve technical changes.”

The rules were originally put in place in the 1920s to stop “double taxation” of companies operating in different countries and encourage businesses to invest internationally.

“We have moved from a world where we were so good at eliminating double taxation with tax treaties and transfer pricing rules that we have facilitated double non-taxation. You have rules, they are bilateral, but businesses are global. And of course they can play on the differences between the sovereignties, or the gaps. And where are the gaps? In tax havens. So what we need to do is fix the rules and develop better co-operation. And if we do that we put an end to double non-taxation. We need to be balanced. Double taxation is bad [and] multiple taxation is worse because that will harm cross-border investment. And that is what we need, for growth and for employment.”

The OECD says that tax competition to encourage investment is fine. Smaller countries such as Ireland and larger countries such as the UK, with low corporation tax rates, have used it to their advantage.

“The problem we face today is not the low rate in Ireland, or the low rate in the UK,” Mr Saint-Amans said. “It is the fact that you have $2trn of accumulated profit of US companies located where? In Bermuda or the Cayman Islands – there is no activity there.” And that has to stop? “Absolutely.”

Newcastle Laundry Services

Promoting Newcastle Laundry Services
Direct Submit Internet Marketing are pleased to announce they are working with laundry services of Newcastle providing professional linen hire solutions for businesses, restaurants and private home owners alike. From simple domestic household washing, duvets, table cloths and shirt laundry service to a complete guest laundry and bed linen rental package for large hotels.

If you would like to know how Direct Submit could help your website work harder for your business then why not call us today on 0845 2722350 and let us help talk through the many cost effective and proven SEO & Internet Marketing techniques we are able to offer.

HSBC to Make Decision on Move in Months

HSBC to Make Decision on Move in Months
HSBC says it will make its decision whether to move its headquarters out of the UK within months rather than years. It has been based in the country since 1993, when it moved here to enable it to take over high street giant Midland Bank. “It’s going to take us a few months, not years, [to make a decision],” said Mr Gulliver.

The bank may give details of the methodology that it will use to assess whether to move on 9 June. Its decision will be submitted to HSBC’s board before being taken to its shareholders.

The statement came as HSBC reported a pre-tax profit of $7.06bn for the first three months of the year, up 4% on last year. The bank’s profits in Europe and Asia, HSBC’s biggest markets, increased while its non-core markets declined slightly.

“Our business recovered well in the first quarter following a difficult [fourth quarter]” said HSBC chief executive Stuart Gulliver.

HSBC is grappling with accusations of foreign exchange manipulation and assisting tax avoidance. The UK is investigating allegations that HSBC’s Swiss private bank helped clients to evade tax. The scandal “has undoubtedly done reputational damage to the firm” and “affected [employees’] sense of pride in the firm”, but has had very little impact on HSBC’s private banking performance, said Mr Gulliver.