11. Managing Your Online Business?, IUH 2009-12, 2ND Ed, R513A

Author Notes: Reference Copy, links to Original Copy removed due to the Age of the Content. See the top Blog Menu for Copyright Concerns, Some Content Removed.

business
Dr. Don, Founder ICFO

11. Managing Your Online Business?, IUH 2009-12, 2ND Ed, R513A

Congratulations on your Decision to Start or Grow your Business Online. This handbook will help put you on the path to building a successful online business while avoiding the scams. It is written with an offline business mindset meaning that we are serious about your business and what it takes for you to prepare yourself. Online, it is not a 9-5 job any more than an offline business. It is not a hobby! While you may have to treat it as a part-time job due to other work commitments until it grows, it should be treated as I will do it when I can or want. Discipline yourself and follow a daily plan of action to build your business.

 

Doing business online is a far cry from just becoming an affiliate or getting your own domain, building a website and off you go!

1.1      GET COMFORTABLE

Get a good chair and desk, table or workstation of proper height for your keyboard to minimize your discomfort.

1.2      WORKING AT HOME

To think, read, write and work without the TV, and other distractions – especially if one of your income opportunities includes Forex. Adjust your online work hours for your day job, if you have one, and for the best time to work without distractions. Forget the chat rooms, social networks, Skype, etc. which is time consuming or limit your time to these methods of creating business for yourself.

 

So you have either been in the online business or looking to get into it. I call this section “Get Comfortable” because this online venture is not a 5 – 20 minutes a day job, no matter what you are told by others. If you have been online for a while, then you probably already know that.

 

Your website(s) have to be marketed, regardless if it 100% autopilot, no sponsorship required, we do the marketing for you, or any of the other “hype” stories that you have or will be told.

PAID OR EMAIL ADVERTISING

Set up you ads, spend your money, and wait for the next time you need to top off of advertising budget. Make several ads, ads need to be monitored, tested – to see what works, what doesn’t work- ultimately what brings in and converts the buyers.

Setup and periodically run your email advertising program. Get leads for your email and check your ads for spam. You need to learn advertising and marketing techniques. And the list goes on….

VARIOUS TRAFFIC PROGRAMS

You either have to buy credits to run your ads, or your click or surf the sites hour after hour to earn credits to posts your ads. Ads often have to be posted on a daily basis, so you have to access each site daily to post your ads. Ads posted to various free, or Free-For-All (FFA), ads blasters, etc.; these often require confirmation, so after you have posted your ads, you need to check your email to confirm the posting.

 

 

1.3      SELF-DISCIPLINE

A favorite of the work-at-homers: Work in your pajamas, shorts or whatever. Sounds great, but I recommend that you treat your online venture like any job. No, you do not need a tie, but get up shower and shave, brush your teeth (you get the point ladies)

Whether full-time or part-time treat your online job as a business and not a hobby. Your advantage is that you can do it at home. Great: No buses, no traffic and none of all those other inconveniences that you put up with in having to leave the house for an outside job. You will feel better, work better, and be more productive

1.4      MANAGING YOUR COMPUTER AND SOFTWARE

I get very uncomfortable and frustrated when I am trying to do something and my computer and other equipment is not working properly. I need this equipment to do my job, if they do not work properly; how can I be productive?

MICROSOFT VERSUS APPLE

I have with been with Microsoft since the very early days and do not have any Apple experience other than testing and having compatibly problems, so my comments here are Windows based.

 

If you can afford it, get a good high-speed computer, printer/fax combination, broadband or wireless modem, and a bigger monitor. Additional memory is cheap so it is value for dollar to upgrade your memory and graphics

 

Social networking, even email requires that your computer be able to cope with the video and graphic demands made of it. Check your computer Windows Experience rating.

WINDOW EXPERIENCE

Whether you are buying a new computer or using and older one; check your Windows Experience Index base score to see what you might do to improve your computer’s performance

 

Go to Start Control Panel, System and Maintenance, Performance Information and Tools;

 

Check Your Computer’s Window Experience Index Base Score. Click on Window Experience Index link The screen will advise you of the weak points in your computer that you might make an upgrade to improve performance, again check the memory. Usually, the memory and graphics will be your computers weak points. Again, if you are buying new, be sure to check this before your leave the shop. VIRUS PROTECTION

A necessary starting point to maintain and protect your computer. A computer virus is a computer program that can copy itself and infect a computer. The term “virus” is also commonly but erroneously used to refer to other types of malware, adware, and spyware programs that do not have the reproductive ability.

 

A true virus can only spread from one computer to another (in some form of executable code) when its host is taken to the target computer; for instance because a user sent it over a network or the Internet, or carried it on a removable medium such as a floppy disk, CD, DVD, or USB drive. Viruses can increase

 

 

 

their chances of spreading to other computers by infecting files on a network file system or a file system that is accessed by another computer.

 

Most personal computers are now connected to the Internet and to local area networks, facilitating the spread of malicious code. Today’s viruses may also take advantage of network services such as the World Wide Web, email, Instant Messaging, and file sharing systems to spread. Wikipedia

 

As an active online user, you must protect your computer and files from any such attacks. Windows defender helps, but I prefer to supplement windows features with a third party solution.

 

While there a many paid commercial and free software available to you, I have had satisfactory results for a free program for personal use offered by Avast, although I have since upgraded to full-protection. This software program automatically runs in the background and is updated to keep your virus detection current. Free version available.

Avast

New computers normally come with a trial version of virus software leaving it up to you to accept and upgrade or not. I usually delete that program and install Avast.

SLOW COMPUTERS

The daily use of your computer will result in various defragmented files; i.e. a piece of the file here and another there. To improve the computers performance, it is necessary to periodically clean your computer hardrive; usually the “C” drive. Then defrag your registry and your computer drives. However, Windows will defrag the drives, but does not defrag the registry.

WINDOWS TOOLS

Windows Update Keeping your computer software updated can reduce your changes of a getting a computer virus, better operation and performance. Window update can update both windows and other Microsoft problem as the same time

Go to Start – lower left hand windows logo All programs

Find “Windows Update” Click and let it run

If you leave your computer running all night, you can set the update software to update the computer automatically; however, it will reboot itself to install the changes. Therefore, if you have Forex trades going, then your Forex sites will be offline until you open them again.

 

If there are a lot of updates, then it is recommended that you run the update program again to get updates to the updates. Change happens! Window update can update all your Microsoft products

RECYCLE BIN

When you delete a file from your computer, it is temporarily stored in the Recycle Bin. This usually gives you an opportunity to restore the file to its original location if you discover that the file should not have been deleted.

 

 

 

To permanently remove files from the computer and reclaim any hard disk space they were using, you need to permanently delete files from the Recycle Bin. You can choose to delete individual files from the Recycle Bin or empty the entire Recycle Bin at once.

Click to open Recycle Bin.

Do one of the following: To delete one file, click it, and then press DELETE. To delete all of the files, on the toolbar, click Empty the Recycle Bin.

You can also empty the Recycle Bin, without opening it. Right-click the Recycle Bin, and then click Empty Recycle Bin. To permanently delete a file from your computer without first sending it to the Recycle Bin, Click the file, and then press SHIFT+DELETE.

DISK CLEANUP

If you want to reduce the number of unnecessary files on your hard disk to free up disk space and help your computer run faster, use Disk Cleanup. It removes temporary files, empties the Recycle Bin, and removes a variety of system files and other items that you no longer need.

Click to open Disk Cleanup.

In the Disk Cleanup Options dialog box, choose whether you want to clean up your own files only or all of the files on the computer. If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

If the Disk Cleanup: Drive Selection dialog box appears, select the hard disk drive that you want to clean up, and then click OK.

Click the Disk Cleanup tab, and then select the check boxes for the files you want to delete. When you finish selecting the files you want to delete, click OK, and then click Delete files to confirm the operation. Disk Cleanup proceeds to remove all unnecessary files from your computer.

Disk cleanup can also delete the files in the recycle bin

DEFRAGMENT YOUR HARD DISK

Fragmentation makes your hard disk do extra work that can slow down your computer. Disk Defragmenter rearranges fragmented data so your hard disk can work more efficiently. Disk Defragmenter can run on a schedule, but you can also defragment your hard disk manually.

Click to open Disk Defragmenter. If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

Click Defragment Now.

Disk Defragmenter might take from several minutes to a few hours to finish, depending on the size and degree of fragmentation of your hard disk. Although not recommended. You can still use your computer during the defragmentation process.

If you have not defragmented your computer in a while, then you should repeat the process a second time.

THIRD PARTY TOOLS

I prefer the free third party solutions offered below for defragging my computer. Often they offer more features and in this case are faster and more visible. Find tools to defrag both the hardrive and the registry. Often third party vendors will provide good and viable alternatives to the Microsoft’s Windows

 

 

 

One Vendor with various free tools, including both registry clean up and defrag, that work well for me may be found at Auslogics. Auslogics is easy to use, fast and nice graphic interface for the Disk Defrag, registry cleaner, etc.

Again, recommend performing the defrag more than one, as each pass defrag the majority, but another pass may find more. For the amount of work that I do online, I often need to defrag at least once a week with maybe 2-3 passes

While you are there, see the other products Auslogics has to offer. I like their Boost Speed Program.

CHANGE YOUR COMPUTER START-UP PROGRAMS

As you add programs to your computer, some that you will use only on occasion will be installed in your start up folder. This results in unnecessary programs trying to load when you start up, which slows you down

 

 

For the more computer savvy: Got to the Widows logo located at the lower left corner. Type “msconfiq” in the bottom box. The link will show in the window under Programs. Click and this will bring up a new screen

Click the “Start-up” tab and unclick those programs that you don’t need at start-up. Keep your Microsoft, virus and related programs. Click “Apply” and restart your computer. Try it, if you are uncomfortable, then do nothing and let someone else do it for you. Do so, at your own risk.

UPDATE CHECKER

Update Checker updates other programs on your computer for better operation and performance

ROBOFORM

Just managing your affiliations, traffic and other sites, providing signup details for a new site, remembering user name, ids and passwords name for logins can be very time consuming. Window, Google and other offer some help, but the long standing, best rated software that I have found and use is RoboForm

 

RoboForm includes a password generator which is convenient to generate and save different passwords for multiple sites, as has been recommended herein. If you maintain a lot of sites, as I do, then the upgrade is great, but not necessary. Upgrading enables you to click and the site loads and logs you in. The free version will log you in after you have loaded the site.

While you are there see what else http://download.cnet.com has to offer for free

OTHER NEED OR NICE TO HAVE PROGRAMS

Adobe Reader                                  http://get.adobe.com/reader/

1-Click Answers                           http://www.answers.com/main/download_answers_win.jsp Edit Pad Lite                                     http://www.editpadpro.com/editpadlite.html

Free PDF to Word Converter          http://www.hellopdf.com/

Firefox Browser                               http://www.mozilla.com/enUS/firefox/personal.html Free Open Office                                                            hhttp://download.openoffice.org/

 

 

 

SUCCESS OFTEN COMES TO THOSE WHO LOOK, FEEL AND ACT THE PART.

Success radiates through others. If you feel good about yourself, then your chances of success improve. In most cases, to be successful, you need to surround yourself with good people. However, since you are most likely working alone, surround yourself with the proper tools and equipment to make your feel successful. Just as you need to keep yourself informed and up to day, you also need to keep your computers and equipment running at its top performance. Get comfortable and enjoy your online experiences.

ADDING NEW PROGRAMS.

We have already talked about doing your own due diligence as part of your decision to join a new program.

TIP: before you sign up, spend your money, and reload the site on another tab. Try right clicking and opening the site on the new tab. This will give you is a fresh site in case our tip doesn’t work for the site you are considering…

 

Now try to escape or close the first tab, if there is a discount of some kind, it will usually pop- up. Then if you are still interested, your entry cost has gone down; however, you will lose some digital product or something. At least you have a second or third choice, cheaper entry cost. Then if the program works, you can upgrade from your profits.

If you still like the original deal better; then complete your signup up on the second site that you made, before this experiment.

1.5      MANAGING YOUR TIME AND COMMUNICATIONS

Time is a precious commodity, especially if you are starting your online business part-time. Use it wisely and productively

CHATS AND FORUMS

Just like the job offline, some of your associates just to love to mingle and talk, Great for building relationships, but is the relationship productive, will it add to your financial bottomline.

 

Chats are also a great diversion and relaxing, but can eat up your time and take your away from your objectives

SKYPE

Skype is probably one of the best online VOIP solution offering message, telephone and video. Great to for building relationship, directly answering questions and perhaps training with your sponsor or downline. I use it sparingly and don’t leave it on. If one, you keep getting popup for so and so ins online.

EMAIL

I should have been paying more attention to this chapter as I will discuss later. Managing your email is a large part of managing your business after you have everything setup.

 

 

 

What to do when email that you want keeps showing up in your junk mail, instead of your regular mail folders? We have spent some time talking about scams and spam mails, but when you are in business you need your mail, when you are sending mail, you want it to get to the other party.

 

What is Whitelisting? How do you dispose of the spam or junk mail that is overloading your junk mailbox and inbox?

Why are most sites now recommending the use of Gmail; its advantage and disadvantages?

WHAT IS WHITELISTING?

A Whitelist is a list of email addresses or domain names from which an email blocking program will allow messages to be received. email blocking programs, also called a spam filters, are intended to prevent most unsolicited email messages (spam) from appearing in subscriber inboxes. But these programs are not perfect. Cleverly crafted spam gets through, and a few desired messages are blocked.

 

Most Internet users can tolerate the occasional unsolicited email advertisement that a spam filter misses, but are concerned by the thought that an important message might not be received. The whitelist option is a solution to the latter problem. The list can be gradually compiled over a period of time, and can be edited whenever the user wants.

 

Some spam filters delete suspected junk email messages straightaway, but others allow the user to place them in a quarantined inbox. Periodically, the quarantined messages are observed to see if any of them are legitimate messages. This option is used by some Webbased email clients in place of, or in addition to, a whitelist.

How to Whitelist Your Emails

The Terms and Conditions of most traffic sites state that you must “Whitelist” their email when you join their site.

 

In other cases, some information or emails that you want to receive may wind up in your junk mail; Whitelisting, or Safelisting is a method of identifying and ensuring that you receive the mail that you want.

 

All this self-policing for spam is great, but affects us as well as the spammers. More and more sites, especially free Traffic sites with their volumes of advertiser’s email that they out only to have it blocked or sent to junk mail. Many sites now post the following message or otherwise complain about their problems with Yahoo mail getting through to their customers.

 

Please open a gmail.com account to sign up as more ISP’s are bouncing Ads.

If you use other than Gmail, then see your email provider for Whitelisting instructions.

GMAIL

From your junk mail folder, click the email and click the “NOT SPAM” tab.

To have future emails from the same originator go directly to your INBOX, click the email and go to the “MORE” Tab.

 

 

 

This will bring an up a drop-down menu, Select “FILTER MESSAGES LIKE THIS”. A new screen will show your selected email and others from the same source.

Click “NEXT STEP” which will bring up the CREATE FILER screen.

Select “NEVER SEND IT TO SPAM” You can apply of all message if there are any. Finish by clicking CREATE FILER”

WHAT IS A BLACKHOLE LIST?

A Blackhole list, sometimes simply referred to as a blacklist, is the publication of a group of ISP addresses known to be sources of spam, a type of email more formally known as unsolicited commercial email (UCE).

 

The goal of a blackhole list is to provide a list of IP addresses that a network can use to filter out undesirable traffic. After filtering, traffic coming or going to an IP address on the list simply disappears, as if it were swallowed by an astronomical black hole. The Mail Abuse Prevention System Real-time Blackhole List, which has over 3000 entries, is one of the most popular blackhole lists.

GMAIL ACCOUNTS

BENEFITS OF GMAIL

Gmail is FREE and you can open multiple accounts. Many list builders require that you have at least two accounts, one for admin type mail and one for advertising mail. Go to Gmail.com. All of your Gmail accounts can easily be imported into Outlook. Gmail will retain all of your email, BUT see disadvantages

DISADVANTAGES OF GMAIL

You cannot do sorts, and search results seem to vary from the messages in Gmail from those imported in Outlook. You cannot query junk mail. I prefer the features offered by Microsoft Outlook at this time. However that are some other good ones, try a Google search for your choices.

 

TIP: Since Gmail will retain all of your email, then anyone that hacks your Gmail account, which happened to me, will have access to all of your user ID’s and passwords

See also your Google Dashboard

REMEDY

Print and maintain an offline file of all accounts, add to RoboForm. Search for User Id and Password emails, and delete them from your Gmail history.

 

Change your passwords and Ids frequently. Use different passwords and Ids on your financial and personal accounts

 

TIP: You can delete from Gmail, but you must also delete from Google Dashboard.

 

TIP: emails that are caught in the Gmail junk mails folder will not get through to your or Microsoft Outlook

Access your Gmail Junk Mail folder to screen the emails; move the ones you that you need to your inbox

 

 

 

MY TWO BIG MISTAKES

PRIMARY AND LIST ACCOUNTS

Where the signup traffic or list builder site did not offer 2 links, I used my primary email for all mail from that site – Dumb!

 

You really receive very little admin mail except, perhaps, for a promos code, your login, etc. So put all of this site mail into your list account. Once in your primary or admin email account, you have to load the login page and reset your email account to your list account. Slow and Painful, but necessary. Try to keep your Primary account clear of unnecessary ads.

Dump your trash as

Great idea; get a list account so you can keep your primary account free and clear. However, your list account fills up with emails that need to be read or dumped. My mistake, dumpling let’s say all the solo ads.

 

Doing this puts them in Trash which also must be dumped. Google says it dumps all trash over 30 days old, it my case something went wrong and I wound up with over 600,000 emails.

 

TIP: Create a minimum of two Gmail accounts

 

Keep your primary account clear of advertisement by directing all such to your list account. You will continue to receive spam.

LOGINS

Many sites expect you to login or read mail to keep your account active. Some offer a vacation mode which will keep your active, but relieve you of the daily email traffic. Most require you to login in to re- post your ads for the day, as the ads are only good for 24 hours. If you are trying to make money off these sites, rather than just use them to advertise your products; then you need to surf their site, some require you to surf “x” number of sites per day to earn from your downline or to post your ad. Joining one site often leads to joining another and another, until there is no way that you can keep up and read all the mail, or surf daily.

BOXBE

This Free Service site has been banned by many traffic sites; but maybe there is a message there. I just want you to be aware of it, what does and how it might impact or benefit your business and good selves.

REDUCE YOUR EMAIL OVERLOAD

Consider this; you now have some programs and you have joined a few advertising sites to promote your business. By now, you are now receiving emails; lots of them, both junk and intended. How to manage all these?

 

Some of your mail will wind in your regular account while others from the same source will be in your junk folder. If you use free traffic sites and safelists for your advertising, then you will be quickly overloaded with email to read just to earn credit for your own ads. First, unless you have no life at all, you will never keep up.

 

 

 

 

The best you can do is try to visit each of your sites once in a while, surf a little, manage your credits and read some of their emails.

 

TIP: If you have a particular site or probably several that you want to use daily, then you can monitor your junk mail for those sites, and have them filtered to your inbox.

 

See Whitelisting instructions’ above.

Remember, if you are using Microsoft Outlook and perhaps others, email links for credit will not work while that email is in your junk mail folder. Move it to your inbox

 

Once you sign up for these various traffic sites, the mails keeps coming, unless shut them off by going on vacation. Your terms and conditions of the site say that you are willing to read others members email, in exchange for posting your own ads, banners, etc.

 

With so much email coming in each day, you need a methodology to deal with it, since obviously you will never keep up. As I said, I joined many programs for evaluation; some of the “confirmation email” will show up in my “junk’ mail folder, perhaps before you have “whitelisted” the source.

 

Further, I may not remember the site names or the source, because some of these jokers don’t make it easy for you; i.e. Site “XXXa” email will come from XX@xx .xx, or a person you never heard of.

 

So then you are stuck with who is xx.xxobfsctd@XX and is this Site one that I wanted? Still others send email like confirm your site when you never signed up in the first place.

 

TIP: Start With Your Primary email Folder. Search for the Keywords: Welcome, Admin, Support, Confirm, Activate, Validate and Password. Check the junk mail folder for others

From your search, take the action required to activate your new accounts.

 

 

Save the settings, User Id’s and passwords to RoboForm and print the emails for your files.

Since you have completed the action required on these emails, they should be deleted

 

Search the remaining emails by site name. You can then delete all email from that site or Click 1 or 2 or all to get the credits you need, and delete the balance. Some site offer promotions, promos codes, others warn you if you site credits are running low. Most of the traffic sites require you to log in daily to post your ads.

 

TIP: If you really want to reduce your Inbox and Junk Mail boxes and start over because you went on vacation, took a break, or whatever; then Search for “solo”. This will cover the majority of your traffic exchange mail. Delete them form the primary folder and then remember to delete your Trash. I had over 300,000 emails in Gmail with “solo”.

SPAMMER KEYWORDS

The scammer/spammers are perhaps younger and smarter many of us as they now use the same keywords that we use to sort our email; Welcome, Admin, Support, Confirm, Activate, Validate to flood our emails by using the words in the From list or the Titles

SPAMMERS CREATE NEW PROBLEM

You have been waiting for that “Never to be received Support or Admin email”, but when you do a search for “support or admin” you will likely find several scammer/ spammer ads trying to sell you on another site. A search for Password and you will get scammer/spammer ads: Click her to activate you password and site. However, these may very well be emails for sites that you never requested to join in the first place.

ACTIVATING NEW SITES

If you are old and slow like me, then there may be an “activation” email that you have requested but overlooked. When your click on the link, the link has expired and so has your request.

TIP: No Problem. Edit the link in your browser to the base or home page, sign up again, and then wait for a new email with your activation link.

Thanks for Reading – 11. Managing Your Online Business?, IUH 2009-12, 2ND Ed, R513A

Dr Don, Founder, ICFO

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