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How to assess your website’s SEO performance “How can we get to the first page on Google? Do we even rank on Google?” These are some of the most difficult questions for small businesses around the world, and I know it by experience. SEO (search engine optimization) is a complicated concept with ever-evolving rules that are hard to understand for people who are not savvy in digital marketing. Whether you decide to hire an SEO firm or manage   SEO in-house , it’s always a good idea to assess where the work starts and how it progresses. Here are three tools we recommend you use to assess your website performance. Google Analytics In order to ...
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Most documentation efforts fail, especially in smaller IT service providers or understaffed internal teams. But there are different points of failure, which means that solving one issue might not get you anywhere near where you need to be. In fact, you might find yourself playing a game of whack-a-mole, with a new problem scuttling your documentation dreams just as you solve the first one. To solve the many different IT documentation problems, you’ll need to know what they are. Let’s go over the big ones. Point of Failure #1 – It’s Flat A common mistake a lot of IT folks make is thinking that the documentation process begins and ends with ‘writing stuff ...
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Maybe you’re a business owner whose company is humming right along, all cylinders firing, prospects look good. Or maybe your company is facing increased competition, higher costs, and lower profits that hinder growth and expansion. Either way, another company or investor may approach with a merger or acquisition proposal. What factors should you consider if your company faces this dilemma? Merger vs. Acquisition. A merger is when two companies join together, even if one company has made the first move. Typically, a new company will be created with all or part of the original companies included. An acquisition is similar. When one company   acquires ...
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What happens when you bring on a new service or partner with a new vendor to boost your business? Every MSP understands that to keep up with the customers’ needs nowadays, they must reach beyond their usual scope of service and add more technology choices to their portfolio. Finding new technology partners isn’t an issue because every vendor today wants to work with MSPs! But signing up with the vendor isn’t enough to get the sales going. In the last month, we have been interviewing our own MSP partners to find the reasons why the pipeline is not growing as fast as we all want. Here’s what we found.  MSPs expand their horizons but keep the customers ...
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The intangible nature of intellectual property makes it difficult to protect. You can’t just park a security guard next to your intellectual property to keep people from stealing it. In fact, intellectual property (“IP”) has been   defined   as “… a collection of ideas and concepts…”  Though harder to protect than your company’s computer equipment or warehouses, business owners and innovators still have ways to safeguard their IP assets from theft or misuse. Copyright Protection A   copyright   protects original works of authorship, including novels, songs, computer software, and architecture. It does not, however, protect “facts, ideas, systems, ...
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What does it mean to be a successful MSP? In the current landscape, there’s really no final destination for this. The MSP business as a whole is in a constant state of change – of evolution. What once made an MSP profitable, is no longer sufficient. Rather than reaching a final destination, success for MSPs is now characterized by their ability to keep up with the change, or better yet, stay ahead of it. So what can you do to ensure your MSP is in a good position to adapt to these changes? We put together some thoughts. How is the industry changing? The industry is simultaneously growing and consolidating. Established players are seeking growth by acquisition, ...
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So you want to reap the benefits of automation, but don’t have the expertise to leverage an API. We’re here to tell you that it’s easier than you think. The best explanation I received of an API is that it allows two technologies to talk to one another. Looking at it that way, these technologies must have their own language, their own way of communicating with one another in order to achieve certain ends. So to equip you with the tools you need to start leveraging APIs and automation, you first need to get a sense for this language. With the help of our Product Owner, Hanson Do, and one of our Sales Engineers, Travis Brittain, we put together some of the ...
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Fine print. Seems like contracts are full of it. The clauses and provisions that make up a contract each have a specific purpose, though. Indemnification, for example, is often used to protect a party to a contract. That may sound simple, but can be complicated and costly if entered into lightly. Indemnify means to compensate an individual or entity for a specific loss or damage. In some contracts, you might be the person being indemnified. In other contracts, you may be the party indemnifying another. Indemnity agreements are common in contracts between businesses and even between governments. Indemnification in Action An insurance policy is technically ...
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Video marketing is on the rise and rapidly taking over the content marketing world.  If you haven't implemented video marketing in your content strategy, now is the time. Here is why and how to get started. Why MSPs should integrate video content into their marketing strategy According to the   2019 State of IT report   by Spiceworks, by the end of 2020, 71% of businesses expect to use video marketing for brand awareness and product education. In   “Understanding the Expanding Benefits of Marketing with Video,”   Aberdeen Group says that video marketers get 66% more qualified leads per year and achieve a 54% increase in brand awareness. ...
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The ROI of API

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“What’s the ROI of that?” We often forget to make this question part of our decision-making process. It’s easy to see why ROI is overlooked for smaller decisions – you might not have great numbers to work with, you might be trying to solve a problem and keen to work with whatever solution presents itself. But at the end of the day, anything that you do should add value. After all, If it doesn’t add some sort of value, why are you doing it? So let’s look at using the  IT Glue API . It’s pretty easy to work with if you have a little coding experience. But there are definitely some folks who would like to streamline processes and build out integrations, but either ...
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Family business ownership is an integral part of American history and commerce. In fact, about 90% of American businesses are family-owned. Business and families have varied purposes, so it should come as no surprise that certain business entities offer greater protection to family-owned enterprises. Of course, there are pros and cons to any of those entity types, including family limited liability companies. The Family Limited Liability Company You may have heard of family limited liability companies (FLLC) and their first cousin, the family limited liability partnership (FLLP). The structure is essentially the same: The FLLC or FLLP is established, ...
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A merger is a deal where two companies join together as fairly equal partners. Sometimes the two companies involved simply form a brand new company. Other mergers result in the merging of previous names into a new name. For example, when America Online (AOL) merged with Time Warner in 2000, the company they formed was called AOL Time Warner . An acquisition, however, is typically a larger company buying or otherwise acquiring a smaller company. Some companies may merge their identities. Sometimes, however, the smaller company is simply absorbed by the larger company, becoming part of its brand and identity. Why would two companies want to cede control ...
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For over the last 20 years in my career, I have realized one thing that agents and programs I worked with had in common. When they brought up a sale for the customer, they barely cared about the solutions but only asked one simple question, “What is the SPIFF?” By Joe Schiavone A Master Agent vs a Master Solutions Provider For every business, the importance of revenue earned every month is undeniable. For those who work as agents, the chances of earning some SPIFF as a bonus from their vendors are even more desirable. That’s why agents seem to care about how much they can earn from sale above everything else and leave aside all after-sale period, ...
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Did you ever trek up to a famous lookout spot, only to find that once you get there the clouds have rolled in and you can’t see much of anything? Like the time I was in Rio and went up to the Christ the Redeemer statue and it was so foggy I couldn’t even see the top of the statue, much less the city below. I was only there for a day, and had already paid for the tour, so I didn’t have a whole lot of choice about going, even though I knew the weather was bad. I mean,   nobody in their right mind would choose to have such terrible visibility , right? What’s inhibiting full network visibility? So why do MSPs choose to attempt to service their customers without ...
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A contract is more than a piece of paper signed by two or more parties. It is a legally enforceable agreement. So, what can make a contract unenforceable ? Mistakes All contracts need at least the following elements to be enforceable: An offer and acceptance of that offer, A specific subject or purpose, and  Consideration. Sometimes mistakes happen in contracts. Some can cause the contract to be unenforceable, especially if the mistake involves one of the major components of the contract. Perhaps two parties, Bob and Dan, sign an ambiguous document they hand wrote and called a contract. However, though their grammar was perfect, and ...
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Smith & Sons, Inc., had been in business for several generations. The current CEO, Henry S., had concerns about the company’s viability. Henry weighed his options carefully. One possible solution involved selling the family business. Reasons to Sell Selling your family business may seem like the best option if you are faced with these problems: Difficult family relationships . Sometimes family members involved in the business just don’t get along. Every decision turns into a fight, and it’s hurting your business. At some point, selling the business may seem like the best solution:  everyone can take their share of the sales price and ...
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With a current pace of digital transformation, MSPs cannot afford to ignore the exploding SaaS market!   We have invited two industry experts to discuss a better and easier way to start selling Cloud solutions without disrupting your current business.  Watch the full webinar recording HERE  (51 minute viewing time) Below, we've collected some of the best advice our experts gave during the webinar in short 1-3 minute clips.  #sales #SalesManagement #Education #Video #Selling #Proces
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Whether it’s a sales pitch or a job interview, how you present yourself and your content makes the whole difference. Since the   majority of people are more   visual than auditory learners (meaning that they perceive information better when they see it than when they hear it), it is a good idea to have a slide deck prepared for any occasion. And that’s where the problem starts. In this post, we give you a few best practices that will elevate your visual presentation deck to an entirely new level. Let’s get started. Start with a simple plan First, when you identify the main subject, think of how you can split it into logical sections. For ...
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Stop me if you’ve heard this before: sell on value, not on price. Sounds great, right? And it is good advice. But you need the right tools, if you’re going to shift the conversation to value. So what does that conversation look like? In the coming weeks, our series   The Value Conversation   will help give you the tools that you need to convey value to new prospects and established clients alike. In order to have easier conversations with your clients and prospects, you first need to have a tough conversation with yourself. You need to understand how, precisely, you add value. The value conversation starts with you – you are not just doing IT stuff, you ...
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Documentation is a critical but often overlooked source of competitive advantage. When you have good documentation practices in place, that means you’ve documented the ins and outs of your clients’ organizations, and you have all the proof of your processes. So when it comes time to sit down with your clients for the quarterly business review (QBR), your documentation has everything you need in order to deliver productive, transparent, and insightful conversations that strengthen your customer relationships. Service level agreements (SLAs) Did you reach your service level agreements during the past quarter? Whether you hit all of your SLAs or fell short on a ...
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