Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Safeguarding Your Business: The Crucial Role of Password Security Management

Posted on: June 10th, 2024 by David Debono

CircleBC have been delivering technology solutions since 2012, across IT, Telecommunications, and Website Design and Development. We also offer various cyber security solutions to help mitigate a broad range of cyber security risks, aiming to equip your business and your team with the necessary tools to safeguard your data and business systems.

While the age of the internet has brought us unprecedented connectivity and access, it’s also brought with it a host of challenges. Today we are living through a time where cyber threats lurk around every virtual corner, so safeguarding your business and data is paramount.

Among the myriad of security measures, having good password security management stands as one of the first lines of defence against unauthorised access to your business and data.

Yet, despite their fundamental importance, many businesses still overlook or underestimate the significance of robust password practices and tools. Deploying one of these systems is as simple as a browser extension on your desktop and an app on your phone, no need to remember passwords or write them down.

cloud business internet

Here’s a number of reasons why secure password management is an indispensable requirement for businesses of all sizes and sectors.

  1. Mitigating Cyber Risks

The reality is that cybercriminals are now constantly devising new methods to breach systems and pilfer our sensitive data. Weak or compromised passwords can serve as low-hanging fruit for these malicious attacks, offering hackers an easy entry point into your organisation’s digital assets.

Implementing stringent password security protocols helps mitigate these risks by fortifying your defences against brute-force attacks, phishing schemes, and other cyber threats.

A password management system will allow your business to have very complex passwords, remove the requirement to write them down on paper or in an insecure document on cloud storage and prevent the reuse of simple passwords across multiple platforms.

  1. Protecting Sensitive Information

From customer databases, company IP, to financial records, our businesses harbour a treasure trove of sensitive information that must be safeguarded at all costs.

A robust password policy ensures that only authorised personnel have access to this data, helping to reduce the instances of data breaches.

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  1. Preserving Business Reputation

A data breach can wreak havoc on your business’s reputation, eroding customer trust and tarnishing your brand image. By prioritising your password security, your business demonstrates your commitment to safeguarding your company and customer data.

Having proactive password management measures in place can help mitigate the risk of unnecessary breaches.

  1. Securing Remote Workforces

The rise of remote working has introduced new challenges to a business’s cybersecurity, as your employees require access to company systems from various locations and devices.

Password security management play a pivotal role in securing remote your workforce, ensuring that your employees adhere to best practices such as using complex passwords, multi-factor authentication, and are regularly updating their credentials.

business internet
  1. Fostering a Culture of Security

Effective cybersecurity is not just about implementing the right technologies; it’s also about cultivating a culture of security within your organisation. By promoting good password protocols and providing regular training on cyber security best practices, you’re empowering your employees to become proactive guardians of your digital assets and data.

Investing in employee education and awareness pays massive dividends in fortifying the overall security posture of your organisation.

Today more than ever, the importance of password security for businesses cannot be overstated. By bolstering your defences against cyber threats, protecting your sensitive information, preserving your reputation, securing your remote workforces, and fostering a culture of security, robust password practices serve as a foundation for your cybersecurity strategies.

As our businesses navigate an increasingly complex cyber threat landscape, prioritising your password security is paramount when it comes to safeguarding your business from potential risks and ensuring long-term viability in this ever-evolving digital ecosystem.

Contact our team on 1300 978 073 to find out more about our cyber security and password security management tools.

Cyber Security Training and Awareness

Posted on: April 2nd, 2024 by David Debono

CircleBC have been delivering technology solutions since 2012, across IT, Telecommunications, Website Design and Development and now AI. We offer a comprehensive Cyber Security Training and Awareness service designed to mitigate the risk of costly data breaches through Human Risk Management (HRM). This service encourages proactive prevention measures to inform your staff of a broad range of cyber security risks, aiming to equip your business and your team with the necessary tools and knowledge to safeguard your data and your business systems.

cloud business internet

CIRCLEBC’S CYBER SECURITY TRAINING SERVICE COSTS ONLY:
$3/USER PER MONTH.
AT THIS PRICE ITS BETTER TO
BE SAFE THAN SORRY.
FREE TRIALS AVAILABLE!

The Human Element in Cyber Security

The vulnerability of businesses to cyber threats often lies with your staff, where a significant percentage of breaches result from phishing and human error. Recognising this, CircleBC’s service focuses on transforming the workforce into a knowledgeable and vigilant front line of defence, significantly reducing the likelihood of successful cyber attacks and enhancing overall security posture.

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business internet

Key Components of Cyber Security Training and Awareness

Security Awareness Training

We provide employees with customised, engaging training sessions that address specific security knowledge gaps. By prioritising areas of highest risk and offering regular updates, CircleBC ensures that all team members are up-to-date on the latest cyber threats and best practices. This not only helps in creating a culture of security awareness across the organisation but also assists in complying with international standards like ISO 27001, showcasing a commitment to rigorous data protection measures.

Simulated Phishing

By simulating sophisticated and common phishing attacks, this initiative identifies vulnerable employees and offers them targeted education to bolster their defences. This proactive approach not only enhances the individual’s ability to spot and thwart phishing attempts but also strengthens the organisation’s overall resilience to such threats. The practical experience gained from these simulations equips employees with the knowledge to act as a critical line of defence against cyber attacks.

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Dark Web Monitoring

Our Dark Web Monitoring service acts as an early warning system by tracking the dark web for indications of stolen credentials. This proactive surveillance helps prevent potential attacks by alerting businesses to exposed user accounts before they can be exploited. It’s an invaluable tool for mitigating risks associated with data breaches and for maintaining the integrity of an organisation’s digital identity.

Policy Management

Effective policy management ensures that all employees are consistently informed about and adhere to the company’s security policies and procedures. CircleBC’s approach streamlines this process by providing a central repository of core documents and an efficient system for tracking eSignature approvals. This not only simplifies the dissemination and acknowledgment of policies but also reinforces a culture of compliance and accountability within the organisation.

CircleBC’s Cyber Security Training and Awareness service represents a holistic approach to addressing the human factor in cyber security. By providing targeted training, simulating real-world phishing scenarios, monitoring the dark web for threats, and managing policy compliance.

CircleBC equips businesses with the tools and knowledge necessary to effectively mitigate risks and protect their digital assets. In the realm of cyber security, proactive prevention is indeed better than reactive measures, and CircleBC stands as a trusted partner in fostering a secure, aware, and compliant organisational culture.

Contact Our team on 1300 978 073, to discuss how we can help your team with Cyber Security Training and Awareness.

The Biggest Tech Stories of 2023

Posted on: December 21st, 2023 by David Debono

To say 2023 was a big year in technology is an understatement! This year saw a number of ground-breaking technological news stories…
From crypto, space races, massive cyber-attacks and AI integrating firmly into our daily reality, many of these developments have reshaped industries and made many of us re-think about the ways we do business.
As we look back at the year that was, here’s our top picks of the biggest technological developments of 2023.

 

Quantum Computing Reaches New Heights

In 2023 we literally witnessed a quantum leap! The tech giants vied for supremacy in the quantum race, each unveiling their cutting-edge contributions to the revolution. We also saw scientists achieving unprecedented stability in qubits. This milestone not only pushes the boundaries of computational power but also brings us closer to unlocking the true potential of this technology.

 

5G

The deployment of 5G networks and more sophisticated devices to harness this technology was a significant development this year. This next-gen wireless technology promises faster internet speeds, lower latency rates, and enhanced connectivity across devices.

As more regions adopt 5G infrastructure both here and globally, it opens possibilities for innovations such as autonomous vehicles, smart cities applications, augmented reality experiences, improved connectivity and much more.

 

 

Blockchain & Web3

Blockchain and cryptocurrency continued to shape the financial landscape in 2023. The launch of new digital currencies, regulatory developments, and innovative blockchain applications underscored the transformative potential of decentralised tech. According to Acumen Research and Consulting, the global Web3 market is expected to grow to $81.90 billion by 2032.

Industries such as supply chain management, healthcare records management, and digital identity verification applications are all exploring blockchain’s potential for streamlining processes while maintaining data integrity.

 

 

Social Media

Social media platforms were also at the forefront of tech news headlines this year. The bird finally fell off its perch, as we watched the X takeover with Elon Musk at the helm.

As technology advances, so do concerns about its ethical use and impact on privacy of social media’s 4.3 billion users. 2023 saw intensified debates on technology regulation and the need to strike a balance between innovation and safeguarding user data, when it comes to social platforms.

 

 

AI

AI has continued to make massive strides in 2023. We saw breakthroughs in natural language processing and machine learning algorithms that enabled AI systems to perform complex tasks with greater accuracy and efficiency, paving the way for AI-powered solutions across almost every industry.

Caution is still present, as business leaders and futurists stress the importance of retaining a human element in these processes and introducing guardrails for the responsible use of this technology.

This comes as data suggests 39.6% of organisations are likely to increase their AI spending in 2024 – leaving us with no doubt that AI will be closely watched.

At the top of the list…

 

Cyber Security

As technology evolves, so do the threats it poses. 2023 saw an uptick in cybersecurity challenges, with high-profile cyber-attacks making headlines. The need for robust security measures is more apparent than ever, prompting a renewed focus on developing advanced cybersecurity technologies to protect sensitive data and critical infrastructure.

Multiple reports and research have placed cybersecurity as one of the most pressing concern for business owners large and small. The cliched image of a hoodie-clad hackers tapping away in their garages has fallen away to that of sophisticated criminal syndicates that run like businesses.

These threats are not going anywhere, especially while generative AI is making social engineering, pretexting, and phishing look even more real than ever, so we can expect to see this translated into increased resources and spending in 2024.

There is no question that the technological landscape of 2023 will be remembered for some remarkable achievements and transformative shifts. From the quantum realm to the expanses of outer space, the fusion of innovation and ambition has propelled us into a future where the possibilities are limited only by our imagination.

As we reflect on the biggest technology news stories of 2023, it will be interesting to see where we are this time next year.

 

CircleBC has a wealth of experience in working with customers to understand their business needs and technical requirements. Our front-end staff are supported by a team of technical consultants who are experts in the fields of engineering, telecommunications, IT Infrastructure, web design, software and online solutions.

 

Need Help Migrating Your WordPress Website?

Posted on: August 5th, 2022 by David Debono

Do you have a WordPress Website and would like to change hosting providers? Is your website slow, takes long for basic changes to update? Is your website going down constantly and overall have poor uptime? Are you running out of storage or is your site going down everytime a backup is created? Are you having WordPress compatibility problems because you are not able to update your Cpanel, Cloudlinux, PHP or Database Version (SQL, MariaDB) because your hosts servers don’t support that version? Are you experiencing poor customer service from your current hosting provider?

If you are experiencing any of the problems above, the team at CircleBC can help. We have access to a range of Website Hosting Solutions both hosted in Australia and overseas, we only utilise high quality infrastructure with excellent uptime and reliability, we can customise solutions to your exact needs and truly believe that there isn’t a one size fits all approach to website and email hosting.

We can customise CPU, RAM and Storage so you only pay for what you need. If you only need entry level shared hosting, high quality business grade shared hosting, a Virtual Private Server (VPS), a dedicated server or your own private cloud, we have access to all of these solutions.

If you require email hosting in combination with your website hosting, we would recommend not hosting your website on the same server as your emails, as if anything were to happen to the web server, you don’t want both your website and emails to be affected. We can provide very affordable per mailbox pricing for email hosting, and we can also offer Office365 and GSuite/Gmail mail hosting. We have access to a network of partners that can assist in migrating your emails from your old platform to the new.

If your current hosting provider or developer is providing difficult to work with and won’t provide you access, we can work with you to explore the options and then put measures in place to ensure that you have better access to your website, emails and domain name in the future.

Unfortunately, the transition between one WordPress hosting provider and another isn’t as simple as clicking a button, we will need to liaise with yourself and your old hosting provider to ensure that the transition goes smoothly. We will setup the new hosting environment, transfer your website and emails and facilitate the changes to your domain name records (DNS). Our team can also assist you with the ongoing support of your website moving forward, many hosting providers will pass the buck to get you to speak to your developer to fix issues, however, as we have a team of website developers that work in conjunction with our hosting team, we can resolve problem without giving you the run around.

If you are considering changing hosting providers for your website, the team at CircleBC have worked on hundreds of WordPress projects over the years and are experts in not only the transition but also in after sales support. We work with organisations of all sizes including small to medium businesses, corporates, not for profits, digital agencies, marketing agencies, creative agencies, IT Companies or any other business looking to outsource WordPress Development and Hosting.

CircleBC have helped businesses all over Australia, including Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Hobart and Darwin with WordPress Website Hosting, Development and Support.

So if you are located in New South Wales (NSW), Queensland (QLD), Victoria (VIC), Western Australia (WA), South Australia (SA), Australian Capital Territory (ACT), Tasmania (TAS), Northern Territory (NT) and need help with a WordPress Website migration give the team at CircleBC a call, the initial consultation is complimentary and obligation free 1300 978 073

What is the impact of Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 becoming End Of Life?

Posted on: January 9th, 2020 by David Debono

Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 are obsolete and vendor support will be ending on January 14th 2020, meaning that the infrastructure will soon be end of life and unsupported. If you haven’t looked into your migration or upgrade options yet, your infrastructure and application security and performance could be affected.

As soon as the support lifecycle for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 has lapsed ongoing free security updates and non security patches will no longer be available, there will be no free vendor support options and online technical content updates will no longer be available.

Not patching your infrastructure will leave your operating system vulnerable to security issues and it won’t be long before those end of life systems are specifically targeted and exploited once vulnerabilities are identified, increasing your risks of getting hacked and your sensitive corporate data being compromised.

Microsoft strongly recommends that customers migrate away from the 2008 stack prior to the end of support deadline to ensure your infrastructure and applications remain supported and secure, however, in some instances where customers cannot meet the deadline, you may have the ability to purchase extended security updates for a limited time, however, this may not be available to everyone and some restrictions do apply.

Some products that are not available for extended security updates include Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 and R2, Windows HPC Server 2008 and R2, Windows Server update services 3.0 and SP1 and SP2, Windows Storage Server 2008 basic and 32-bit and embedded and embedded 32-bit, Windows Storage Server 2008 enterprise and embedded and R2, Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 essentials, Windows Storage Server 2008 standard and embedded and workgroup and workgroup embedded.

The following Windows Server 2008 products will become end of life as of the 14th of January 2020:

  • Windows Server 2008 and R2 data centre, with and without Hyper-V
  • Windows Server 2008 and R2 enterprise, with and without Hyper-V
  • Windows Server 2008 and R2 for Itanium-based systems
  • Windows Server 2008 Foundation
  • Windows Server 2008 and R2 standard with and without Hyper-V.

Extended Support for Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 end on July 9th, 2019.

The good news is since 2008 there have been a number of technology advancements in the cloud and Server space, there are significant benefits to be had by migrating to modern technologies including improved security, performance and importantly cost savings.

Some migration and upgrade options include retaining on premise Servers and Storage and upgrading to more recent software either newer Microsoft Based or Linux based operating systems, or we can assist you with a migration into the cloud on platforms including Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS or Google Cloud. We can walk through the various options with you, we will take the time to determine what other cloud infrastructure your organisation has available and we can make a recommendation based on the best interests of your organisation. In the event that your organisation has already adopted Azure, AWS or Google cloud it may make sense to standardise.

In the event that your organisation does not have a concrete strategy in place to upgrade your obsolete, end of life Servers and Storage and would like to understand what is involved to migrate to cloud infrastructure our team can help. We can work with you on Cloud Transformation projects, we can do audits on your VM’s and applications to determine if everything is virtualised and ready for migration. We can complete IT infrastructure audits to gauge the condition of your infrastructure, what hardware and software you are running and to propose a strategy for the ongoing upkeep of your assets.

CircleBC have assisted businesses all over Australia with their Technology needs, we can help you make a decision on what to do with your end of life Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2, we can support businesses in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Hobart, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia.

Do You Need A WordPress Consultant?

Posted on: December 11th, 2019 by David Debono

If you need assistance with your website a WordPress Consultant can help. CircleBC offer a range of WordPress Consulting and Website Development Services and can help you with your website end to end.

A WordPress Consultant can help you with WordPress Development, bug fixes, troubleshooting, support and maintenance. Our team have well over 10 years of WordPress Consulting and Development experience.

Regardless of the state of your website, whether it is still an idea and in the planning phase, if the website was started by an amateur developer and is unfinished or has problems, or if your WordPress site is running smoothly and you want to keep it that way. Being able to leverage off the expertise of a WordPress Consultant can be a lifesaver.

Our team can help you with the following WordPress consulting services include:

  • Website Design, Wireframes, Conceptual Design and Development
  • General WordPress Troubleshooting, Support, Upgrades and Maintenance, on an ongoing or adhoc basis.
  • We can help you transfer and migrate websites from one host to another, or we can host the site for you.
  • WordPress Conversion Services
  • Joomla to WordPress Conversions, Drupal to WordPress Conversions, HTML to WordPress Conversions, Shopify to WordPress Conversions, WIX to WordPress Conversions, Adobe Business Catalyst to WordPress Conversions.
  • We can improve the Responsiveness and Mobile Friendliness of your site
  • WordPress Plugin development and customisation of existing WordPress Plugins. We can work with you to understand your functionality requirements and can research, purchase and install plugins to expand on your current site.
  • Custom Development and WordPress customisation services. We can assist you with modifying HTML/HTML5, CSS, JS and PHP.
  • Website Performance improvements and WordPress Optimisation of your site, resolving issues associated with slow page load speeds and resolving issues from popular website auditing services such as Google Page Speed Insights and GTMetrix. We can assist with SEO related issues to ensure onpage optimisation fundamentals are correct.
  • We can assist with making modifications, customisations and improvements to your WooCommerce site, we can implement extensions and custom development to deploy the functionality you need.
  • WordPress Website Security upgrades and improvements, website hardening. Recovery from hacks, malware clean-ups.
  • Content changes, image upload to your gallery or banner/slider, we can post blogs and add pages to your site.

If you need some support with your website, CircleBC’s WordPress Consultants can help, our team pride ourselves on taking the time to understand your requirements, we can produce estimates on how much work is involved to either make development changes or maintain and update your site. We strive to develop long term relationships with you and your website. Leave the technical stuff to us.

Our WordPress Consultants have helped businesses all over Australia with their website issues, we have delivered WordPress Services in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Hobart, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia.

What Is Dark Fiber and What Are The Benefits?

Posted on: November 25th, 2019 by David Debono

dark-Fiber

Dark Fiber is a fiber optic cable with no light passing through it. It is also referred to as unlit fiber. A Dark Fiber, fibre optic cable is a data communication cable that has not been activated and is not connected or utilised yet.

Since the installation of fibre optic cable is typically complicated and very costly, it is common practice to lay down more cable than initially necessary in preparation for future demand.

Telecommunications companies and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) make use of unlit fiber to provide lit and managed fibre connections to their customers for an ongoing monthly service access fee.

Using single mode (SMF) and multi mode (MMF) Fibre cables, customers benefit from high bandwidth, with long distance and short distance applications respectively.

Fiber Optic cables transmit data through light impulses. Data travels by way of light signals through transmission medium. The speed of light is transmitted about 299,792,458 meters per second, which is approximately 300,000 kilometers per second.

When light travels through a fiber optic cable, its speed is reduced by approximately 30%. At these signal speeds, data transfer can reach about 1000 Mbps or more. (1Gbps+)

To get a better idea of the magnitude of these speeds, in comparison to other broadband connections, an ADSL (asymmetric digital subscriber line) would typically achieve a 7 – 15 Mbps download rate, and a relatively fast 4G mobile network connection could reach 20 – 40Mbps. This makes the fiber optic cable a superior symmetrical data connection, offering uncontended download and upload speeds.

 

Benefits of Dark Fiber

  • High performance equipment at each end of the connection can achieve very high and almost unlimited bandwidth.
  • Other benefits include fast scalability (scale up or down based on required bandwidth). You can assign bandwidth to specific services like video conferencing or backups and add additional services to the network and per your custom requirement.
  • Completely control your network. You can build, deploy, manage, and secure everything on your terms.
  • Dark fiber allows organisations for improved encryption and security or their data network.
  • Create a direct connection between two locations, between branches, data centers, or buildings.
  • Less dependency on fiber optic providers for your linked connection.
  • Physical Redundancy can also be achieved by deploying a dark fiber network.

Pros and Cons of Dark Fiber

Pros

  • Faster data transmission.
  • The initial costs can be higher but can be more cost-effective over
    time due to reduced carrier costs
  • No shared network or costly rentals from service providers
  • More reliable because there are fewer limitations
    are less interference.
  • Improved commercial internet service experience
  • Improved latency
  • Increased Security
  • Scalable
  • Providing more control to the organisation

Cons

  • Connection limitations (last mile)
  • Available across major cities but limited in regional and rural areas
  • High initial costs for planning, equipment, and set up
  • Internal resources require greater expertise

Available in several Australian capital cities:
Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Alice Springs, Darwin, Newcastle, Perth, Adelaide, Hobart, Canberra

Businesses and organisations requiring more control of their data networks, with great performance are well suited for a dark fiber network.

Costs and overall solution will be dependent on the organisation’s specific requirements.

Organisations needing a network with a higher degree of speed, control, security, and scalability should strongly consider dark fiber as a part of their data network strategy.

Need Help With The Procurement of Dark Fiber?

If your business is interested in Dark Fiber but needs some support in determining the feasibility of the project, CircleBC can provide you with a Dark Fiber Consultant who can help you work through the process of determining if Dark Fiber is a good fit for your organisation, if it is available where you need it and we can help you organise proposals from vendors to save you the legwork. As these projects can sometimes be quite complex, we can work with you during the initial requirements gathering face, consulting with internal teams and vendors, through the procurement cycle and through to delivery and implementation, if you need Network Engineers to assist you to integrate with you network we can assist you with that as well.

Circle Business Consulting have helped businesses all over Australia with their Telecommunications requirements, we have delivered solutions in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Hobart, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia. If you have a dark fiber project and need an independent consultant to help you assess the feasibility and to obtain quotations please give us a call on 1300 978 073.

Microsoft Office 365 Calling

Posted on: October 29th, 2019 by David Debono

What is Microsoft Office 365 Teams Calling?

A simple, scalable landline and mobile calling within Microsoft Office 365

You might have heard over the past few years or that Microsoft have released some new functionality which allows you to be able to make outbound calls using Microsoft Teams. You had previously only been able to make Audio and Video calls to people that have been added to your Microsoft Teams Environment and no outbound calls.

With the introduction of Microsoft Office 365 Teams Calling, you will be able to replace your current phone system, whether it be on-premises or fully hosted with a Phone System that is an extension of your Office 365, with full PBX capabilities, once a Calling Plan has been setup, your staff will have full outbound calling capability to regular phones and mobiles, both local and overseas.

You will need to have an active Microsoft Office 365 subscription E1 or E3 license, a phone system license and a calling plan, or an Office 365 Enterprise E5 plan, which has a Phone System add-on included.

Some telecommunications providers have SIP connections which integrate with Microsoft, this enables businesses to use their Microsoft collaboration environment inclusive of Skype for Business and Microsoft teams to dial out and call landlines and mobile numbers outside of their organisation without the need to use a separate telecommunications provider and phone systems to make these calls.

You get all the benefits of a Hosted PBX system (cloud based phone system) for telephony, combined with the Microsoft Collaborative environment.

This phone system integration, empowers your staff to work more effectively by integrating with the collaborative tools such as Skype and Microsoft Teams that they are already using, providing them a consistent and intuitive user experience.

In its simplest form, your organisation might only have some basic desk-phones (or mobile apps) which would be integrated to a cloud based Microsoft and phone system environment.

The end user would be able to use their computer, desk phone or mobile phone, with internet connectivity and be able to make outbound and internal calls using Microsoft Teams.

 

How Do I Enable Microsoft Office Teams Calling and How Does The Process Work?

  1. To begin with you will need a Microsoft Office 365 subscription (ie. cloud based E1, E3 or E5 licence). If you don’t have Office365 we can work with you to select suitable plans.
  2. A SIP connection / Calling Plan or Voice Plan (telco provider that has SIP connectivity with Microsoft). We can review your existing Voice expenditure and organise pricing for your organisation.
  3. Internet access (fast internet connection to carry voice traffic)
  4. Choose desired hardware, phones or accessories, whether it be a Desk phone and/or Mobile Phone (end users can use the Microsoft mobile app or a Microsoft approved desk handset)
  5. We help you manage and deploy the solution

What are the Benefits of Microsoft Office 365 Calling?

 

  • Further expand the capability and benefits of your Microsoft licences
  • Simplify voice communication
  • Remove the need for an on-premise PBX or a separate hosted PBX service
  • Save on telephony related costs
  • Simplify overall technology and communications infrastructure and services for all staff

 

Some additional benefits:

  • Assuming you are already using Microsoft Teams, the change management and on-boarding process is quite easy. For users that don’t already have Microsoft Teams, the interface is quite intuitive.
  • You can keep your existing landline numbers allowing for full phone number portability and the ability for your business to make and receive calls via one business number or from multiple extensions. New numbers can also be allocated as required.
  • If hardware is required ie handsets or headsets, minimal investment is required in comparison to a traditional on-premise phone system in that there is no PBX on site, with Microsoft Office 365 Teams Calling hardware investment is entirely optional i.e you can utilise existing computers and mobile devices
  • Highly scalable, easy to manage and cost effective
  • Create a more unified and productive workspace, bring all collaboration technology and tools together in one single future ready environment
  • Improved security and compliance, due to reduced number of systems and infrastructure and leveraging off the security of Microsoft’s applications and data centres.

 

Next Steps, need help setting up a Microsoft Office 365 Calling environment for your organisation?

In order to determine if your business is ready to deploy Microsoft Office 365 Teams calling , there are a number of things to assess and consider, to ensure your implementation is a success:

  • Complete a network assessment to check your bandwidth is sufficient for voice and video calls
  • Assess what your end user device requirements, compatibility and how ready your are to deploy
  • Determine which Calling Plans are required for your users and organisation, and associated licenses and plan the setup, along with some initial change management preparation to advise the business that a new telephony system will be implemented.
  • Setup extensions and Port your phone numbers
  • Complete end user training and complete change management process. To minimise disruption, it is critical that your staff have the training that they need to make good use of the technology.

If you need assistance or need some advice with Microsoft Office Teams Calling give us a call on 1300 978 973. Circle Business Consulting  have helped businesses all over Australia solve technology related issues, we have delivered phone system solutions in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Hobart, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia.

 

Web Design: Tips to Increase Conversions in 2019

Posted on: September 24th, 2019 by David Debono

Generating website visitors are good – but as a business, it is also important that you learn how to turn those visitors into customers.

No matter how many visitors your website gets, if they don’t sign up to your newsletter, or they don’t make a purchase, these visitors are good for nothing.

There are various ways to convert visitors to subscribers or customers such as A/B testing, usability testing, and customer surveys. However, one of the most effective ways is by improving your website design.

Web design is one of the factors that Google’s algorithm considers and Google rewards websites that are well optimised.

Here are ten tips on how you can improve your website and increase visitor conversions:

 

1. Your Design Matters A Lot

While it can be true that websites aren’t all about design, a Stanford University study has revealed that one of the first things visitors rely on in helping them determine whether a website is credible or not is the website design.

Adobe has also conducted some studies and 68% of those respondents have mentioned that a good online experience solely relies on a good website design. If your visitors have a great experience using your site, they’re more likely to become customers.

This is particularly relevant if you are operating in an industry that revolves around design. Interior designer, Gary Hamer, understands the importance of website design for his business, saying, “As an interior designer, the design of my website is, indirectly, a reflection of the services I offer. This is my first opportunity to demonstrate my eye for design to the customer and to build a level of trust in my work. This is crucial for me in creating conversions.”

 

2. Choose Appropriate Colours

Based on a study conducted by Kissmetrics, 85% of consumers have mentioned that colour is one of their main reasons for purchasing a product. In another study, 52% of respondents mentioned that they’re more likely to stop visiting a website if they find the colours clashing and unappealing.

The use of colour on a website sets the tone of the business and its services. Although this is important for all businesses, it can be more necessary in some industries than others, particularly where there are traditional expectations such as weddings or funerals.

Darran Moran, a small business owner and celebrant from New South Wales, agrees that colour has an impact on customers’ perception of his business. He had this to say, “In my industry, colour plays a major role in conveying a message to my customers. Weddings are a very personal experience so it is important that customers feel like I can cater to their needs. If my website were black and red, for example, this could isolate a number of customers from converting as they might feel that I am unable to meet their traditional vision.”

This is why you must choose attractive colour combinations, and colours that talk about your brand and set the mood that you want for your customers upon visiting your site.

 

3. Your Website Must Be Mobile-Friendly

Half of your website visitors won’t be using a computer. They’ll be accessing it from their smartphones which is why it is important that your site layout and design, including call-to-action buttons, must be mobile responsive. Bear in mind that these actions must be easily reachable by the thumb.

Looking to make sure your website is mobile friendly? SEO specialist Clarinda Cheon has an exclusive tip, she explains “with the majority of searches now coming from mobile devices, you can provide a better mobile experience by offering less. Remove any flash, increase button and font sizes, and compress images. You can also use Google’s free Mobile Friendly Test to gauge your progress. If you are going down the professional route, a quality team like Circle BC can ensure you’re ticking all the boxes necessary.”

 

4. The F Pattern

Knowing the pattern of how your visitors look at a web page significantly helps in boosting your online conversions.

Research has revealed that most visitors commonly use the F pattern when visiting a site – they start at the top left corner going across the top right corner, then moving across the middle of the letter F and then move across.

Make sure that the first quadrant makes a good impression aesthetically speaking, and ensure that crucial points and information that you want to relay can also be found in that area.

 

5. The Rule Of Thirds

The rule of thirds doesn’t just apply in photography, but also in print ads and website design.

This rule is solely based on where the eyes of your readers and visitors are often drawn. Try drawing an imaginary grid on your website separating the site by 3 lines horizontally and vertically.

It’s best to place those call to action buttons on the four corners of the centre square – which is usually part of the 1/3 of the entire web page.

 

6. Utilise White Space

White space can be utilised in a website, but remember not to overdo it. Do not go crazy with graphics, frames, and other designs just to “fill” that empty gap.

Too little white space on your website may give an impression that it’s too cluttered, making navigation and reading more difficult for your users. With that in mind, if they can’t easily navigate and go through the essential information easily, getting a conversion is more difficult.

Studies have shown that 38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the layout is unattractive, so it pays to play it simple.

 

7. Simple Navigation

The easiest way to convert a visitor is to make sure that they can easily navigate where they want to go on your website, and that includes a call-to-action button.

When designing a website, your visitors should be able to get to where they want to go without having to go through a lot of pages or clicking a lot of menus and links.

Businesses that offer multiple services would be aware of this. The team at Shepherd Plumbing aim to make site navigation as simple as possible for the customers, saying this, “Since we offer a variety of services, it can be easy for customers to become confused or lost in our website if it is too complicated. Having one simple dropdown menu of “Services” means our customers can easily find what they’re looking for, ultimately resulting in more conversions for us.”

 

8. Use Strong Call-To-Action Buttons

These are the buttons that your visitors click to start a conversation or to opt-in to your mailing list. So, the better your CTA buttons are, the higher the chances that you’ll get more conversions.

Studies have shown that CTA buttons that are coloured red, green and orange have the highest conversion rates – or literally anything that stands out from the rest of the page.

 

9. Use Images To Point Your Visitors To The Right Direction

If you want to point your visitors to a specific area that you want them to see, utilise images. You’ll be surprised by how effective these photos are.

Use a photo of a man or woman pointing towards that area where you want them to look. If you can’t find a suitable image, you may want to use directional arrows.

 

10. Limit Their Choices

Different studies have been conducted and have stated that the more choices you give your visitors, they are more likely to take a long time in figuring out what course of action they’d like to take. If you only have one action that you want your visitors to take, make sure to give them a clear directional path and don’t give them other options.

Although technology can be frustrating in business, it can also be a big advantage. Hopefully, this guide has given you 10 easy ways that you can improve your website and start seeing more conversions.

So what are you waiting for? Get started now and see results for your business.


Author Bio

Ryan Smith is an Australian writer and uni student living in Melbourne. As a Business Management major, Ryan is passionate about business revenues. He also has a love for pets, he regularly takes his pet dog for a walk in the park.

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