For hundreds of businesses outsourcing work has traditionally been the panacea for the problem of rising overheads; since their business has always been to save on costs for clients, the outsourcing industry have believed themselves recession-proof. But corporations that specialize in accepting outsourced work have seen business fade nevertheless, and are beginning to uncover a few flaws in their belief system. When businesses overseas are faced with unpredictable changes in the economic climate, the knee-jerk response is to quickly shut down a lot of expenses and downsize the workforce before these can affect the bottom line; companies try to focus on efficiency, on getting the most done with less.
The traditional belief that expects outsourcing companies to thrive in a downturn only makes sense for the final stages, when an uptick is widely foreseen. India’s outsourcing giants do not expect these effects to become visible for a few months yet. As it stands today, there is such competition for what little business there is to go around that even customers with one-off jobs are fought over with concessions. The larger accounts find that they suddenly have much more leverage.
An example of the kind of concessions expected of outsourcing service providers is the demand seen for more cost-effective billing methods. Outsourcing projects have traditionally been billed by the job and not by the hour. If an outsourcing firm found a way to deliver results in half the time it still got paid as much as it originally asked for. Outcome-based payment is in favor in today’s recessive environment. This is when companies pay for billable hours, and not for the job itself. While this may not actually save much over the routine month, it gives the buying company more control in an unpredictable environment; if their business happens to plummet from the recession, they will not find themselves locked into paying the outsourcing company overseas a bill for work they no longer need.
While business has picked up for India’s largest outsourcing providers like IBM and Infosys, revenues are not expected to return to former levels soon. The outsourcing economy is seen to be a bellwether for the economy in general. When this picks up everything else will too.
Software makers, ones that may be as established as Sun Microsystems or as fresh as a small startup, can tend to frequent the same catalog of mistakes when it comes to running their businesses. Microsoft or Sun, owing to their size, will live to tell the tale; a startup may not. By all accounts software companies direct most of their budget to sales and marketing. And yet there is no real acknowledgment of how important it is to identify an audience, to acquire them and to retain them. Selling to software customers is not what it used to be. Corporate spending on information technology is no longer directed at large upfront purchases; what is favored instead is the ability to make smaller purchases spread over several years. Additionally, smaller vendors are seen today to be able to deliver a great deal of value and customer satisfaction; large software vendors no longer have it all over their little competitors. Why are these changes ignored?
Makers of software are often deeply invested in the concept of the informal business environment. Loosely organized company structures can obviously lead to poor coordination and missed signals from the sales front. An informal hand at the helm can also place the company at risk of being run on one person’s whim or vision. Sun Microsystems was always committed to pushing its own line of poorly received custom hardware to go with its well-received software. This weighed the software side of the company down and caused internal tensions. Small companies sometimes also insist on the custom-made over the generic. Sun Microsystems’ market share in server software has suffered because it is tethered to the fortunes of its hardware platform. The important lesson to learn here is to have the advantages of vision-based leadership, but to make sure that it is tempered with hard-nosed business vision.
Many software vendors large and small have tried to raise their stature or solidify their position in the market with acquisitions. Microsoft famously had its failed takeover of Yahoo recently, and Sun spent $1 billion on acquiring the database software company MySQL. Acquisitions are an important way to inject new blood into a software business; but it is possible to overestimate the benefits from such a move. The basic tendency here too is to base the company’s moves not on sound business principles but on the vision of a founder or stakeholder. It keeps coming back to this: creative types running a business on principles of creativity and personal vision over plain undeniable fact, can be one of the most common problems that can weigh a software business down.
“Like a print magazine, Fast Flip lets you browse sequentially through bundles of recent news, headlines and popular topics, as well as feeds from individual top publishers.” He adds, “As the name suggests, flipping through content is very fast, so you can quickly look through a lot of pages until you find something interesting.”
Fast Flip is designed to drive traffic and revenue to online news sites, for supporting news publishers facing financial trouble. Some three dozen publishers, including the New York Times, the Washington Post and sibling Newsweek, Salon and The Daily Beast have agreed to use their site content with logos and graphical images.
People surfing the corresponding page can flip through content quickly, and move to the original site by clicking on the image. Visitors can sort out news under recent, most viewed, recommended and headlines, and see news under various sections like Politics, Business, Sports, Entertainment etc. Also users can watch news based on sources.
Apart from helping the news industry by driving traffic to their site, Google has also promised to share their revenue from contextual advertising.
Following up on the success of the release of Anova version 3.1.2 which focuses on launch of a user-friendly and search-engine friendly knowledge sharing site, Agriya released the latest updates. This update represents the implementation of features and error fixes based on suggestions from end users.
The new version comes with voting feature for questions and answers. When a user comes across a well written question and thinks the problem is common and going to help someone else searching for it, he can give a thumb up vote to it and make it visible to others. If a question is silly or inappropriate for the community, the user can give a thumbs down vote. Similar action can be carried out with answer to make the best answer familiar among users.
The new release continues to expand the effectiveness of the software, adding option to manage abuse reports and replacing normal file upload with Swf uploader to upload images for questions and answers. In addition, the latest release has fixed design issues and few bugs.
Today, we celebrated yet another birthday at the office and this time round, it’s Mr. Aravind, our CTO. Birthdays are special days that are dedicated solely to you, and are to celebrate one more year of precious life. Nothing beats a birthday celebrated around people you care about. In our own little way, we tried to make this birthday special for our beloved boss, with lots of love, food, wishes and presents!
Before he reached the office, his company’s email inbox was filled with tons of birthday wishes from Ahsanites. After all wishing somebody a very happy birthday shows there are people that love him and truly care a lot about him. It shows he is important to them; it lets him know that the world is beautiful, filled with people who he means so much to. He thanked everyone through mail which also made us feel proud and happy.
His cabin was decorated with colored papers and balloons when he walked in. Most people went into his cabin, to wish him in person.
Let’s not forget, no birthday would be complete without cake! By 6:00 pm, all the Ahsanites assembled on our lovely terrace for the small party. It started off with the birthday song while Mr.Aravind blew out the candles and cut the cake after which everybody enjoyed the snacks. This little party of ours was filled with fun and laughter, and was one that all of us will remember. Take a look at some of the pictures!
Anyone starting a website to promote their products or services online should optimize it for search engines in order to be listed in their results pages (SERPs) and reach the intended audience. Instead of optimizing a site after launching it, it is better to design a website as per SEO needs.
While crawling, web spiders will look for text on the site that is related to the search query. Hence, provide text relevant to products or services offered. The title tags, meta descriptions and keywords per page have to be unique and relevant. Provide keyword rich site content on relevant topics, as spiders judge your site based on these things.
Specify the site URL ( http://www.example.com/) that you prefer for your site and redirect the rest of relevant website URLs like www.example.com/index.html, http://example.com, example.com/home.asp etc to the preferred site URL by adding the 301 redirect (permanent) to the preferred URL, so that user entering relevant website URLs will be directed to your main site page.
Provide breadcrumb trail which is a navigation aid that shows both search engines and humans where their current location is and how far they are from the destination page.
Use limited number of graphics, and if possible, avoid them. Provide relevant anchor text to the image links, as spiders can crawl only anchor text and not images. Also the site uploading time is directly proportional to number of graphics on site.
On the whole, it is necessary to prepare a site with simple navigation and architecture for assisting search engines to easily find information on your site.
A webhosting company offers space for your web site on their web server to let people all over the world to view your site on the Internet. We have compiled some of the importance points that you should keep in mind while selecting a web hosting company.
1. The storage space and data transfer rate plays a major role in the selection of web hosting company. It depends on the type and size of your site. If your site is expected to grow, go for a company that offers the option to increase your basic package.
2. Go for a company that offers 99.9% of uptime, only then can you make your site available for user access all the time.
3. Most hosting companies offer 24/7 technical support without additional cost. Make sure you check this by sending mails at various times, and checking the response time. A good company should reply within 24 hours.
4. You should get email accounts and FTP access for your domain, for uploading files to your server in future.
5. Check whether a hosting company offers all the software and features that are the prerequisites for your sites.
6. Don’t settle for company that offers services at lowest costs. Many times, they may not be up to the mark. It doesn’t mean however, that you should choose only the costliest service available. Select a company that offers required service at reasonable rates.
7. Once you select a company, make sure you do your research on it and go through various user reviews based on experience.
Can video marketing make a huge change in online business? A question asked by most business people when they start promoting their business online. Video marketing is an upcoming technology that helps you win the heart of user by sharing information quickly.
In the fast moving world, users’ intention is to get exact information in limited time span. A well designed video can serve this purpose. People are bored of reading text, they prefer to watch and hear to the information than reading.
A study on online video reveals that the number of people who watch online video will top 1 billion in the next five years. It is obvious that interest of people is switching to videos. It is fact that more than 75% of message is grasped through video.
One more reason for the popularity of video marketing on business field is due to the fact that videos are getting accessed by search engines frequently. It is true videos rank very high in popular search engines, hence the chances of getting exposure to public is high in the video marketing.
The cost of video production and publication is less compared to other advertising costs. You don’t require very expensive cameras, microphones and toned presentations. Just a camera connected to a PC is enough to video any product or service you are offering. A webcam recorder in your hand makes your job easy.
Publishing videos online can be done at zero cost. All you need is an account in YouTube, you can start uploading videos under corresponding category and drive hordes of viewers to your site. Even video testimonials and product/service videos can be placed on your site, just an FLV player on your site is enough to play videos successfully.
On the whole, video marketing is a cost-effective and ingenious way to promote business online. Millions of net surfers are passionate on online videos, and entrepreneurs are starting to cash in on that fascination.
Aaron Boodman, the Google engineer who oversees the extensions work, has announced in the Chromium blog that in the latest update of Chrome, extensions will be on by default on Google Chrome’s developer channel which is one of the top-requested features of Google Chrome’s users.
Extensions are small programs that are added to Google Chrome to modify existing features and customize the way it works. From today, all developers in Google Chrome will get extension support enabled by default which was previously hidden behind the developer flag.
Boodman explains this clearly in the blog – “Removing the flag is the first step in our launch process, and it means we’re ready for a few more people to start using extensions– the kind of adventurous people who populate the dev channel. For this release, we focused on getting most of the basic infrastructure and security pieces in place, in particular our new permission system. However, you should still be cautious and only install extensions from developers you trust.” As he says, a developer has to be cautious while installing extensions from a third party.
Visit this page to download the dev channel.
We don’t want to waste your time with unnecessary explanation on link building; here are the techniques to get back-links for your site.
Link submission is the favorite technique followed in practice, to build site links. Submit articles related to services or products offered with your site link, to popular article submission sites like ezinearticles.com, webpronews.com, ideamarketers.com, goarticles.com, articlecentral.com, articlefinders.com etc. Also submit links to articles or your site on the social bookmarking sites like Twitter, Digg, StumbleUpon, Delicious etc.
Start a blog related to your products and/or services and update it regularly with great content. Visit other blogs and leave useful comments with your site signature to drive direct traffic to your site. Don’t forget to list it in the best blog directories.
Link exchange pays you well when you drive in the right path. It is the process of exchanging hyperlinks with websites that offer similar or related products/services. The three types of link exchanges are one-way link exchange, reciprocal link exchange and three way link. While exchanging links, keep in mind that getting links from pages with list of hundreds of off topic link partners is meaningless. Try to get links from sites with reasonable page rank, say above 4.
Submit your site to directories like DMOZ that offers free submissions, and you can also use paid directories. Also tag sites related to your site along with it on bookmarking sites like Delicious. This will attract users interested in your products/services, thereby driving effective traffic to your site.
A great way to drive more traffic is to place videos related to our products or services, on YouTube.
We have compiled only the link building methods that really work.
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