How to Painlessly Negotiate Cheaper Broadband Prices

If you’re paying more than you’d like to pay for your broadband service, you may be able to negotiate a cheaper deal if there’s at least one competitor in town. It doesn’t even take great negotiating skills or a long list of justifications, just a few easy steps that will result in almost sure fire lower prices.

Ideally, you have two major ISPs who tend to fight over customers in your area (often sending flyers is an indication), as this means both will be willing to discount the cost of your broadband internet. Here’s a step-by-step process for negotiating cheaper broadband prices.

1. Gather information about your current rates

Find your last three bills and take a close look at them. Know what you’re paying for the plan itself and what your fees are. For instance, you might pay $80/month altogether, of which $65/month is for your broadband internet not including fees and router rental cost. When they tell you they can cut it down to $60/month, you can ask whether this is the broadband cost with or without fees to know if you’ll be paying $75 or $60 per month.

2. Consider bundling services

You might get a discount by simply bundling broadband services with other services like home phone or TV, if you aren’t already, to save money on all of them. It can mean being locked into a particular feature set, however. Look up information on your ISP’s website and the competitor’s website about the available bundles and promotions.

3. Have an idea of how much you want to pay

If you settle for anything they give you, you might not save much. Have an idea of what a great price for your broadband internet service would be and what you’re willing to accept. If you know what you’re aiming for, even a moment of silence and uncertain sound as you consider an offer the representative just made can do wonders. You should also keep in mind what services or add-ons you’re willing to give up in exchange for a lower price.

4. Call the competition and ask for a better price

Now that you know how much you’re paying for your broadband, call your ISP’s main competitor and ask for a better price than you’re paying right now. Be sure to give them the price without fees and taxes included and tell them that this is the base price. Listen to their offer and decide if it sounds reasonable according to what you’re looking for, and ask if it’s a promo rate or permanent.

5. Sign up for the new service or let them know you’ll get back to them

The most effective way to get your current ISP to pay attention is to actually sign up for the competitor’s service. You may even want to go ahead with the switch! If you really don’t want to go with the competitor, let them know you’ll call them back. You can be sure they will keep a note on your file – probably attached to your current phone number – with the price they offered you, so keep a note for yourself, too.

6. Call your current ISP and see if you can get a better price

You may have to call to cancel your service with this internet provider; if so, this is the perfect opportunity. You will likely speak to a representative who asks you why you’re leaving. Tell them the offer you received from another company (you can mention the name or not, it’s up to you). They will probably try to beat it, and it’s up to you whether you want to accept this new price from your current ISP or actually switch to the other provider.

Negotiating by calling a competitor is a very easy way to save money on your broadband internet, and you don’t even have to be pushy or know how to negotiate! By simply considering other options and asking for a better price based on what they offered, you can often get a significant discount on your monthly broadband bill.

Attached Images:

Laura was disappointed with her broadband service so spent time calling over providers in her area.  She soon switched to a cheaper and better provider.


Custom WordPress shortcode functions

Here is an example of creating shortcode for your wordpress blog,   this is a simple use of shortcodes and you can write much more complex shortcodes when required.
[sourcecode language="php"]</pre>
//[yearsExperience]
 function yearsExperienceFunction()
 {
 $date1=new DateTime("now") ;
 $date2=new DateTime("1990-1-1");
 $date= $date1->diff($date2);
 return $date->format('%y');
 }
 add_shortcode( 'yearsExperience', 'yearsExperienceFunction' );

[/sourcecode]

 This shortcode writes out the number of years since a given date, this function can be added to your funcitons.php file and its hook add_shortcode registers the function for use, you can then call the function from within your post.
[sourcecode language="php"][yearsExperience][/sourcecode]



For more information on shortcodes please visit http://codex.wordpress.org/Shortcode_API

Some Latest Mobile Phone Gadgets

There is always an ever increasing need for new mobile phone gadgets as people just won’t quit asking for them. The manufacturers however are listening and they are always up for the task of making new and even more amazing gadgets for mobile phones for the gadget followers to buy and Use. Here are some new gadgets for mobile phones in the market.

Charge Card:

Wireless Charging Station

Amongst the new mobile phone gadgets, charge card is a very popular one as it eliminates the need of cables and chargers to be kept along all the time for the time when the cell phone user may have to charge the device. The good thing is that it is very portable and has no wires at all. The chard card takes just a few seconds to completely charge a cell phone.

Camera Attachment Device:

Device Mini

A cell phone remains what it is no matter how powerful camera it bears. Even the latest of the smart phones do not have as much mega pixels built in a good camera. The new camera attachment device can be attached in front of the camera of a smart phone to increase the number of mega pixels that it carries. These new camera extension mobile phone gadgets able the users to have a photographer like feel and take of pictures with higher resolutions. And the best part is that they adjust on the slim smart phones easily. Phone Reminders on wrist:

Many times it happens that a cell phone user overlooks the reminder that he or she had set on the cell phone. This can happen either because the user was a bit too busy at work that he couldn’t notice, or the alert of the cell phone was not powerful enough to let the user know of it. As the new mobile phone gadgets keep on coming to the market, there are some pretty amazing ones coming along as well. A similar example of such devices is the wrist worn cell phone reminder that is connected to the phone but notifies the user on his wrist watch. This way, even if the user is away from the cell phone, these new mobile phone gadgets let the users know off all the reminders.

Waterproof and Task One Cases:

Amongst some real funny mobile phone gadgets is the waterproof, tough and task one case for smart phones. This case is of great utility for several reasons. The first one is that it makes the cell phone a lot safer around water and even saves it when it falls. Who would not want to have a case that gives a small knife, a tiny scissor and stuff for utility as task one case?

Shock Pad

Mirror Case:

Then there are some things to simple to be counted in the mobile phone gadgets like the mirror bearing case for smart phones. It gives utility, it looks nice, and its cheap, this makes it a very popular yet commonly used simple gadget for cell phone. The case is made hard enough to protect the mirror from breaking.

Author Bio:

This article is written by Intkhab Ahsan. He belongs to http://www.prof-tagservice.dk/tagpaptag.htm. He is regular guest blogger whose articles appear on Technology and Fashion blogs.

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Some Latest Mobile Phone Gadgets

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12 Great Tips for Using Pinterest for Your Business in 2013

Many businesses today are turning to social media in order to better promote their products and Pinterest is one of those Medias. So, if you are interested in getting your product into the eyes of millions of people and gaining new customers for your business at the same time Pinterest is the way to go.

1. Get Connected If you really want to boost ratings or gain customers through Pinterest you should link your new Pinterest account to your Twitter and Facebook accounts.

2. Put A Button On It Adding a Pinterest Pin It button will make it easier for people to follow your product line or to show off the products that they have pinned. The buttons are free to use and easy to add to any page.

3. Follow Your Followers Keeping your company in the eye of the public can be done by following those who are following your products. The next thing that you want to do is follow the big guys because they in-turn will almost always follow you back.

4. Keep It Interesting Adding material that is interesting to your Pinterest page is a great way to keep folks coming back. You can even add photos and videos to your page. You want to keep followers interested in your products never put material on your page that has nothing to do with your products.

5. Don’t Forget To Link Back Pinterest doesn’t give the option to sell your products therefore it is very important that you always link back to your own website.

6. Likes and Re-pins Visit other Pinterest pages, make comments, and be sure to follow the pages that get lots of Facebook likes, Pinterest re-pins, and Twitter Follows.

7. Picture Perfect You must have high quality photos on your page and keep all of your photos about the same size. Fuzzy or out of focus photos don’t get pinned.

8. Proper Tags Tagging photos is with words that are directly related to or describe your product correctly is how they get indexed and later found during searches. Take your time and carefully consider each tag before you enter it.

9. Help Your Virtual Neighbors Everyone needs a little help from time to time and when they get it are quite grateful. Grateful enough in fact to follow your page and recommend your products.

10. Keyword The Keys To Being Found Adding keywords to the end of you product descriptions can help people to find your products more easily.

11. Browser Bookmarklet “Pin It” Easy to install the Bookmarklet Pin It button can be added to your Internet Browser in seconds and it makes keeping up with things that you like easy to do.

12. Mind Your Manners Often referred to as etiquette minding your manners and being polite are all very important to any type of business. Another good idea is to keep a positive attitude about your followers even if you don’t agree with their comment or content.

Citations:
Featured images:

Ben Sawyer is an Social Media Marketing consultant for Arverne, well known real estate company from New Yowk These are some of his tips about Pinterest, based on his own experience.


Why public relations and SEO are the best mesh ever!

So who knew that using public relations could really be an advantage for your SEO? Frankly this is one of the most brilliant ideas out there. If you know what public relations is all about then you will see how much in common it has with SEO. When things are similar and have something in common, they match very well as they complement each other. Public relations are one thing that can strengthen SEO in a tremendous way. After reading this article you will actually wonder why you didn’t think of this to begin with.

Getting other aspects to be involved with the SEO strategy can be quite tricky but Public relations have proven to be a good match. However it is very important to understand what public relations is all about and how it thrives online. In a nutshell, public relations or PR is the section in a company that is in charge of generating affairs and connections with other large publications or companies that will offer promotion for your corporation. PR has so many responsibilities and one of them involves online work. We can see that PR has almost the same job as SEO with regards to creating relationships and bringing in visitors and traffic. So how can PR help SEO?

  • Networking /connections: PR finds media outlets so as to promote business. These media outlets are usually very big. So imagine getting connections with those big businesses which are very authoritative, there is a high chance of your website being recognized by these big companies. This becomes a big thread of connections where the other company connects you with many more companies.
  • Content Experience: PR experts usually have a very good way of working with the media. They also know the media world really well. They know exactly how to write things that will absolutely explode. Why is this, those in PR have known what the public wants. Make sure that those in PR read your content to help you know what works best. However you could learn PR on the side and if you are doing SEO use the principles of PR to help you. When doing SEO, you have no idea how much PR professionals come in handy.
  • Traffic/visibility: Yes PR will really help SEO but in this one, PR could totally benefit from SEO making it the best of both worlds. This is called killing two birds with one stone. When you use the right keywords, you will clearly get all the visitors out there. This goes for press releases hence helping PR.
  • Reputation: PR is used to lobby for a company. SEO can use PR to advertise your site out there hence making it credible and highly regarded.
  • Communications: PR practitioners know so much of communication. This way they can help you write the best content for SEO.

PR and SEO are almost co-related to each other, the above points should motivate you to use PR wisely today!

Author Bio: Jems Holden is an Internet marketing blogger cum web designer who has been serving the web since 2009 with web design agency Manchester Sizzle Media. So far he has written several articles with advice and suggestion for creative web designing and eCommerce web design.


10 Incredible Things to Try on Your Blog

What is a Blog?

A blog is a discussion or an informational site usually published on World Wide Web and consisting of the discrete entries typically displayed in a reverse chronological order. In this write up we are going to look at ten incredible things that you can try on your blog. Scroll down this article to know more on this.

Basically, your blog can usually be very many things such as your online rants and musings, your personal expression, a chance to inform or entertain. However, after a while your blog can start suffering from s bit of stagnation. In case of this, you must ensure that you inject new life onto it. Here are the 10 incredible things you should try on your blog in case of such a situation.

10 Incredible Things to Try on Your Blog.

1.Writing a Letter

You can write a letter and encourage your audience to chime in with their own suggestions for the letter. However, your letter has to put some thoughts or information for your audience.

2.Spreading the News

It is essential that you ensure you make a collection of the interesting things which your reader may like. You can as well select articles as they come up on your blog and share your opinions and thoughts on the different topics.

3.Reviewing the Possibilities

You can start a new series on the blog whereby you review relevant locations, services or items. This may assist you arrange for some free products or services on trial basis.

However, you must be honest while reviewing and avoid payment for the review sort of products which can be sketchy.

4.Making Lists

Your list should be humorous and actually very helpful. Ensure that you go with what you well know about and share at a time few tidbits. For instance, you can make a list of the things you should not eat before coding for 10 hours.

5.Telling Your Secretes

Getting into your basics may easily add some depth as well as interest to your blog. However, you must not tell everything about yourself.

6.Disagreeing With Something Big

This involves looking for a hot topic and then disagreeing with it. For instance, if majority of your readers are in favor of one football club, make it a point to disagree with all of them.

7.Revisiting Old Posts

This involves going through your posts and identifying the ones you wrote longtime ago. This will assist you in removing any dead link.

8.Picturing Montage

This involves posting a series of pictures or creating your own photo montage. For instance, you can post a series of funny persons about your industry.

9.Guest Blogging

This involves considering accepting the guest blogs. If the blog is top ranked in search engines, you can allow others take part in the fun of sharing.

10.Caption Contest

If you’ve got already a loyal following, it is essential that you provide your readers something new by providing them with a caption contest. However, set some guidelines in order to prevent profanity. This trick will be best if you use it with your WordPress Video Blog .

Last but not the least; ensure that you always keep your blog interesting as well as fresh all the time.

Author bio: This article has been written by Tracy. She is an  Drupal Search Engine Optimization expert. She loves to give new tips and tricks to bloggers for keeping their blog fresh and attractive.


Theories on Colour to Design Good Labels

Did you ever notice that a clear blue sky can do wonders for your mood? Or that a meeting in a white room can make you fall asleep? If so, you have seen just how much colours can affect our emotions. There is a study of this type of effects, and it is known as colour psychology. This is becoming much more recognized as far as how much colour can affect how consumers make purchases.

When you are thinking about your product and label designs, you should definitely consider color psychology. The label for your product is one of the key parts of your marketing, so the colours that you select for it can either make or break your monthly sales.

Below is a partial list of colours and what sort of emotional responses typically are associated with each colour. You should think about what sort of emotion you want to stir in the heart of your consumer. What sorts of colours are related to these emotions? Are you incorporating the correct colours into your labels and marketing materials. If not, you will want to consider working closely with your printing company and overhauling the colours of your labels ad product packaging.

  • White: Relaxed, secure, complacent, light.
  • Pink: Tranquil, relaxed.
  • Green: Peace, happy, relaxed, less stressful.
  • Light blue: Comfort.
  • Blue: Creative, happy, safety
  • Red: Energy, warmth, danger, failure, mistakes. Can actually increase the heart rate.
  • Bright yellow: Danger, irritability
  • Orange: Hunger, vitality
  • Brown: Passivity, security, depression

Next, you will need to think about the colour of the text that you want to put on the label, and the colour of the label itself. If you choose poorly on the colour of the text, you really can hurt your marketing efforts. So you are going to want to think about this very carefully. The vital key to pairing the colour of your text and the background label colour is contrast. You need to have a good deal of contrast between the two. The more contrast there is, the more the text will be able to be read. The higher contrast also will limit the strain on the consumer’s eye. One of the most reliable ways to make this choice is to select a dark colour for the label, and a light color for the text. Generally, black on yellow is the most readable, followed by black on white, and yellow on black. The least readable is white on red.

Keep in mind that selecting the colours for your labels does not have to be difficult. There are many places you can go online that can help you to select the right colours. When you come up with your labels, there will probably be a base colour that you want to have. It could be the colour of your logo, or perhaps a colour that matches with the products that you are marketing.

If you put in enough thought about your label colour and your text, you should be able to come up with some excellent options.

Lawrence Reaves has an extensive background in business and is a contributing author for MaverickLabel.com, a custom printing company offering labels, custom printed ribbons, stickers of all sorts and warning labels.  Go here to see how they can change the look of your business printing.


How Smartphones Are Making Smart Shoppers

According to a new survey by Deloitte, more shoppers will supplement their 2012 holiday shopping with smartphones than ever before. Although a general increase in smartphone ownership accentuated the increase, the biggest reason for the increase is based in the large number of websites that have incorporated their marketing strategies for a smartphone-based audience. 

The figures are in! 

  • 58 percent of customers use their smart phones to compare prices with other stores once inside.
  • 62 percent of people who own smartphones use their Bluetooth technology to locate the nearest store or the store with the best prices.
  • Half of smartphone owners use the internet to check product information
  • 42 percent check the availability of products
  • 45 percent shop online 

Online Sales As Back Up

The trends in smartphone use extend far beyond the figures listed above. Target, for example, has fastened QR codes to the shelves. This means that when an item sells out, customers brandishing smartphones need only point and tap, and the ecommerce software will take them to a secure site where they can order the item online. Panicking shoppers will find relief when they realize the promised remote-controlled car or videogame has been shopped to in-store extinction. 

Social Dining

The food industry has also made moves to cash in on smartphone users. Social dining is in. Sites such as The Connected Table and Screened Dining allow users to decide between the rowdy, full house burger spot with the big line or the vacant sandwich shop that plays all the new techno songs, depending on their social mood, and whether or not they have a report to complete. Not to mention some of these apps incorporate ecommerce software and time your orders, so you can walk to the front of the line, flash your smartphone code, and get down to what you came there to do – eat. 
Grocery Shopping Online

More food for thought: 49 percent of people who own smartphones use them for grocery shopping. If the place down the street has a better deal on this frozen bag of T.G.I.’s shrimp scampi, then it might be time to dump the cart and shift your go-to grocer. Customer loyalty is a thing of the past. The future: Shot and Stop and grocery store shopping apps.

Marketing Smarts

Marketers, listen up. Smartphones have vaulted onto the shopping industry and their use will only continue to increase as we delve further into the millennium.  Put your coupons online, offer deals and discounts to those who sign up to your website, and send e-newsletters with special offers with links to your ecommerce software service. And make sure that your website has been incorporated for those who connect with smartphones. For more ideas on what you can do for marketing strategies, read these fancy bullet points: 

  • Online retailers often offer better deals on items, but shipping is still a factor. According to the aforementioned survey, 71 percent of shoppers are more likely to buy from a retailer that offers free shipping.
  • 56 percent said that they would order from a retailer that offered free returns over one that didn’t, regardless of price. 
  • Shoppers who navigate multiple channels to research their products before buying usually plug twice as much money into the ecommerce software than they would hand to a cashier at a brick and mortar store.

Pella Guadalajara works as a night-shift analyst for online marketing companies, ecommerce software sites, and a myriad of blogs ranging from deep see exploration to Canadian botanists’’ planting methodology. He lives in Vancouver.


A Brief History of SEO

Anyone who used the internet in the 90’s knows that search engines have evolved in the past two decades. The term “Search Engine Optimization” (or SEO) is believed to have been coined by John Audette of the Multimedia Marketing Group in 1997, and it been big business ever since. In the early days of the internet, webmasters simply submitted their site’s URL to a search engine and the engine would send a spider to catalogue links on the page for indexing. Search engines relied primarily on key word density and meta tags, allowing webmasters to improve their rankings by “keyword stuffing”, or using the same words over and over again in page’s text. This, of course, led to websites with poor content skyrocketing to the top of search results.

Search engines had to improve their methodology in order to retain their users. Back Rub was one of the first search engines to implement complex mathematical algorithms that took into account the number of inbound links to a website, which its creators, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, dubbed “PageRank”. In 1998, Back Rub became Google, which still uses Page and Brin’s PageRank algorithm today.

Not to be outdone, webmasters soon found ways to manipulate PageRank, giving rise to an industry of buying and selling links in order to improve search rankings. The term “Link Farm” became the perforative name for websites that did nothing but host links.

By 2005, Google started began tracking individual users’ search histories and location to personalize search results. Their spiders also began searching for the “nofollow” HTML tag, which instructs the engine not to take a link into account when determining PageRank. Ideally, nofollow was meant to prevent spamming on blogs that allowed any user to post text, though webmasters soon saw the benefit of tagging all outbound links as nofollow in order to keep their competition’s PageRank down.

Google Panda
Google Penguin

In 2010, Google announced Google Instant, an algorithm that took time of publication into account, giving more recently updated sites (such as recent news articles) higher rankings. Over the past two years, Google has started to seriously crack down on webmasters who try to manipulate their algorithms with the Panda update in 2011 and the Penguin update in 2012. These measures penalize websites that duplicate content from other webpages or use other unfair tactics such as stuffing keywords in hidden text. Today, most search engines employ human quality control through companies like Leapforce. Leapforce agents rank webpages based on their relevance to given keywords, the quality and timeliness of their content, and their adherence to search engine guidelines.
It seems that every time search engines improve their algorithms, the SEO industry grows even stronger. This is probably a good thing, as websites are being judged more for the quality of their content rather than how well they can “trick” search engines. More and more webmasters are relying on outside help to ensure that their site ranks high without violating any guidelines that could get them banned altogether.


Custom Date of Birth User control .net

Here is a nice solution for a user control for Date of Birth verification, from a user interface perspective its better than a date time popup control as its much quicker to select a day then month then year rather than moving through a popup calendar to find the correct year.

Popup calendars are great when used in the correct place for example booking of a future date like a flight or hotel booking

See live Example

Examaning the Code

This is our content for the Date of Birth control three dropdown lists and customValidator.
[sourcecode language=”vb”]
<%@ Control Language=”VB” AutoEventWireup=”false” CodeFile=”controlDOB.ascx.vb” Inherits=”controlDOB” %>
<div class=”dobPicker”>
<div class=”dateDay”><asp:DropDownList ID=”ddlDay” CausesValidation=”true” runat=”server”></asp:DropDownList></div>
<div class=”dateMonth”><asp:DropDownList ID=”ddlMonth” runat=”server”></asp:DropDownList></div>
<div class=”dateYear”><asp:DropDownList ID=”ddlYear” runat=”server”></asp:DropDownList></div>
<asp:CustomValidator id=”cv1″ runat=”server” Text=”Please enter Date of Birth” EnableClientScript=”true” CssClass=”error” ValidateEmptyText=”true” ></asp:CustomValidator>
</div>
[/sourcecode]
Now in the code behind we need to bind our selectable dates to these dropdownlists
[sourcecode language=”vb”]
Partial Class controlDOB
Inherits System.Web.UI.UserControl</code>

Public theDate As String
Protected Sub Page_Init(sender As Object, e As EventArgs) Handles Me.Init
‘ If Not IsPostBack Then
ddlDay.Items.Add(“DD”)
For i As Integer = 1 To 31
ddlDay.Items.Add(i)
Next i
ddlYear.Items.Add(“YYYY”)
For j As Integer = 1920 To 2010
ddlYear.Items.Add(j)
Next j
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“-Month-“)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“January”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“February”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“March”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“April”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“May”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“June”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“July”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“August”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“September”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“October”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“November”)
ddlMonth.Items.Add(“December”)

End Sub
End Class
[/sourcecode]
Next we need to create the client side validation for the Date of Birth check
[sourcecode language=”vb”]

Dim cstext As New StringBuilder()
‘custom client side validation for DOB checks each drop down returns flase if no value</code>

cstext.Append(“<script type=”text/javascript”>// <![CDATA[
function ShowValue” + ClientID + ” (sender, args) {“)
cstext.Append(” var dropDay = document.getElementById(‘” + ddlDay.ClientID + “‘);”)
cstext.Append(” var dropMonth = document.getElementById(‘” + ddlMonth.ClientID + “‘);”)
cstext.Append(” var dropYear = document.getElementById(‘” + ddlYear.ClientID + “‘);”)
cstext.Append(“if (dropDay.value==’DD’){“)
cstext.Append(“args.IsValid =false }”)
cstext.Append(“else if (dropMonth.value==’-Month-‘){“)
cstext.Append(“args.IsValid =false }”)
cstext.Append(“else if (dropYear.value==’YYYY’){“)
cstext.Append(“args.IsValid =false }”)
cstext.Append(“else {“)
cstext.Append(“args.IsValid =true;} “)
cstext.Append(“}</”) cstext.Append(“script>”)
Page.ClientScript.RegisterClientScriptBlock(GetType(String), ClientID, cstext.ToString(), False)
cv1.ClientValidationFunction = “ShowValue” & ClientID</code>
[/sourcecode]
and finally the server side validate function
[sourcecode language=”vb”]

Protected Sub cv1_ServerValidate(source As Object, args As ServerValidateEventArgs) Handles cv1.ServerValidate
If ddlDay.SelectedIndex = 0 Then
args.IsValid = False
End If
If ddlMonth.SelectedIndex = 0 Then
args.IsValid = False
End If
If ddlYear.SelectedIndex = 0 Then
args.IsValid = False
End If
End Sub
[/sourcecode]

This control can then be added to the page at design time or dynamically