Get in touch with us today! Call us toll-free at 1.866.754.4111 or email us at [email protected] Close button
Web Design Kitchener Waterloo Guelph Cambridge AODA Development




Blog

We've written some insightful, entertaining articles that span topics from support to design to content management and beyond!




This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Illustration of a phone with store-related things coming out of it

 

There is no doubt that with the pandemic businesses have made a shift towards providing products and services online. Whether your company has built a hybrid model, or you’re operating solely online, here are a few tips provided by Big Commerce to help you start and stay afloat:

 

Learn from your customers.

As you grow your business, listening to feedback from your customer base is crucial.

It can be easy to weed out negative feedback, but the truth is, both positive and constructive criticism can bode well for your business.

 

Prioritize customer support.

Prioritizing customer support gives your business the chance to turn unhappy customers into loyal ones. If you can be there in a pinch, you can relieve the issue and deliver your brand promise.

 

In addition, high quality support can often lead to more brand awareness and brand loyalty and trust. Sammy has found that “with brand trust comes social media tagging between groups and good word of mouth.”

 

Stay focused on your niche.

When you begin a new business venture, it’s easy to get excited and want to tap into different markets. But, spreading yourself too thin can result in missed opportunities to capture an engaged audience.

 

Dan Kogan, CEO at 1Digital Agency shares what he believes small business owners should focus on as they grow their brand.

 

Deliver an experience your customers won’t forget.

 

Think of some of your favorite brands, what is it about them that keeps you loyal?

 

The customer experience.

 

Customer experience has a domino effect. If you do it well, you will see a boost in positive brand awareness, traffic, and loyal customers to your online store.

 

Be time-efficient.

As you grow your business, you must use your time efficiently. To help you do this, look to technology and automation.

 

Think omnichannel.

Omnichannel strategies are on the rise, and it’s no surprise.

 

In 2020, customers are shopping in more places. On your eCommerce store, on Amazon, on Instagram…the list goes on.

 

To make sure you are building brand awareness and offering more flexible options for your customers to purchase your products, start developing an omnichannel strategy.

 

Find a balance.

Buckle up for long nights and early mornings, celebratory wins and trips back to the drawing board. Owning and running a small business takes hard work.

 

Don’t fear larger, more established competitors.

You’re fresh meat in a competitive market. That can feel pretty intimidating.

 

Remember, you’re introducing new products into the market because there is a need for them. You have something that your competition lacks.

 

Take an organized approach.

Keeping every part of your business organized will keep functions running smooth.

 

Scott Ginsberg, Head of Content at Metric Digital, shares that his “personal mantra for knowledge management has always centered around one principle: If you don’t write it down, it never happened.”

 

Writing ideas down will help you brainstorm different options for your business, and keep your priorities in check.

 

Choose your battles wisely.

Just like your personal life, it’s important to choose your battles wisely.

 

Starting a business and experiencing growing pains can be stressful. Focus on your most valuable assets and plans to stay steady on the path to success.

 

Build a team.

While you may be very passionate about your business, you won’t achieve success by going about it all on your own.

 

When Kim Terry, CEO at Subscription Systems LLC, began her business, she learned that she needed to rely on both human and technical resources to achieve her dream.

 

Learn to be flexible.

Being flexible allows you to be a better listener to your customer base, be adaptable to change, and always be ready to embrace what’s next. This will keep you ahead of the game.

Be true to your business.

 

Don’t follow the crowd.

When you sought out to start your own business, you did so because there was something missing in the market. By staying true to your passion and purpose, you will be able to communicate your genuine and organic message to your customers.

 

Tessa Wuertz, Director of Marketing & Partnerships at efelle Creative, believes success comes from authentically made brands.

 

Be the best at what you do.

For a couple of moments, forget about the competition, the state of the market, the small details in your logistics strategy.

 

Come back to your purpose and brand purpose. Your goal should always be to be the best at what you do. When you look at the big picture and ask yourself how to be the best at what you do, you will find that your priorities arrive much easier.

 

Think holistically.

Look at your business as a whole — how do you tie together your brand message and experience? How does it connect?

 

Be passionate in everything you do.

The reality is owning a small business is no easy task. Being passionate about what you do, the products you sell, and the customers you do business with will help give your business purpose and a drive for growth.  

 

This emotional connection and drive will keep you having fun in your day-to-day journey to success — and extend in to how you manage your business.

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Top down view of a hand picking from 3 different smiley faces

 

As businesses start, scale, and grow during the pandemic a need for an online presence is becoming increasingly important – we’ve discussed the benefits of this in previous blog posts. Finding the right company for your needs whether they are website design, photography, content creation, social media strategies etc. can be a tiresome task considering there are thousands of options to choose from when completing a simple Google search.

 

As you sift your way through the endless options available to you, you may find companies that offer services to assist you by cultivating a “team” of companies to provide you with the multiple services that you seek. Here’s the thing, by having a middleman you’re handing releasing control and placing into the hands of individuals who don’t necessarily view your needs as a priority.

 

We have noticed more recently that businesses in the Waterloo Region are being targeted by companies such as bark.com who offer up services like those mentioned above. If you’re looking to build a new website for your company and start a marketing campaign, we highly suggest that you veer away from companies like this. Why? After looking up reviews on this specific company, customers who have invested in them have made some pretty alarming reviews about how terrible the experience has been for them, here are a few:

 

“I purchased a number of credits to hopefully get more pet sitting clients. I have not received any clients and feel that the product I was sold was not actually what was advertised. Bark.com guaranteed return on investment, and I have yet to see any clients. When I asked for a refund, I was told that the company does not offer any refunds, despite their "satisfaction guarantee." I also tried to end a free trial subscription, but was forced to fill out a form. I have not heard anything back from the company about the cancellation. I want a refund of my money as well as a confirmation that my subscription is cancelled.” (source)

 

“I purchased credits from Bark.com for video productions "gigs." These credits cost me around $200 a year ago. The leads that were sent to me never responded back to me. It was as if they were fake leads. I can't confirm that, but I just know I used up all of my credits and never had a single lead respond back. So, I stopped using Bark and had not had any contact with them for a year. Today while doing my bills and looking at my bank account I noticed that Bark had taken out $30.25 last month and $30.25 this month for a pro subscription that I had never signed up for. I called them and they refunded me this month's payment, but they told me it was my fault for last month's payment. I had no idea about this "Pro" account. I asked them to delete my account and remove my credit card information. They refuse to reimburse me for last month's payment. This company is running a scam and they need to be held accountable. A class action lawsuit is needed hault this companies’ theft.” (source)

 

These are only two issues of pages of complaints that have been posted by the Better Business Bureau. As you start planning your website, we definitely suggest doing your research and reach out to companies that you may feel are a good fit for you. After 20 years of website services to businesses of all sizes, in the Greater Waterloo Region we know a thing or two to help you along the way. Each one of our sites are custom designed and built to meet your requirements, our marketing team is here to work WITH you to help you generate leads through a thoughtful and meaning full branding strategy.

 

In addition to our expertise, unlike companies such as bark.com, we have a support staff to guide you along the way, you call, we answer. If something isn’t working for you, we’re here to help you re-evaluate and advise you on industry best practices. When it comes to your website, you definitely don’t want to cut corners, I like to say – it’s your business’s resume, it should be the best that it can be and work for you. Our team at REM Web Solutions takes pride in what we do, our customers and their success always come first.

 

If you’re in the Region of Waterloo (Kitchener, Cambridge, or Guelph) and you’re looking to create a new website, start a marketing campaign, boost your digital presence and branding strategy feel free to reach out to us!

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Sean McParland.

Laptop with the warning icon on it

 

In the past few weeks, I’ve received several messages from people that consist of a screenshot of a text message or email followed by one word “Scam?”

 

 

Screenshot of an Amazon scam text message

Screenshot of an Amazon scam text message.

 

Invariably, they were all scams. So, I figured it might be a good idea to make a blog post with some tips on picking out whether something is a scam or not. These can apply to various types of scams like via text, email or phone call. 

 

 

Is there a time limit / sense of urgency?

One of the many tactics that scammers will use is to create a sense of urgency. When you are presented with a situation where you don’t have a lot of time to think, you usually don’t. The following examples demonstrate situations where this tactic can be used to manipulate you into doing something.

 

 

Scenario 1 – Do this thing or something bad will happen

You receive an email that says something along the lines of: “We have found suspicious activities on your amazon account, click this link to log into your account to verify your recent purchases.” That’s not good, what if someone has access to your account and is buying things with your credit card? Better log in to make sure nothing is awry. 

 

Scenario 2 – Do this and something good will happen

Conversely to the previous scenario, you receive an email that says you have won something (like a phone from the screenshot above) BUT you only have a few minutes to collect your prize. All you need to do is fill out the simple survey and then log into your account at the end to verify.  Free? Huh, well free is free, why not right?

 

 

What should you do?

You may have heard the advice “never click links in emails” but then what are you supposed to do instead? Whenever you receive emails related to logging in to any kind of account, you should always do so through a trusted link. Looking at the Amazon example above, what you should do is go directly to https://www.amazon.com and follow the log in links there. This way you know you are actually logging into Amazon and not some Amazon look-a-like site that a scammer has setup. The same would apply to things like your bank, or any other account. 

 

 

Quick tips

 

  • The Golden Rule 

    You have probably heard this one before: “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is”. If there is one tip that you remember, make it this one. If you are presented with a situation when free stuff is dangled in front of you and it requires you to give someone something before you can get said free stuff, then it’s a scam. No, Bill Gates is not going to double the Bitcoin you send to him.
     

  • Ask Questions

    This is a great one for phone scams. Scammers hate when people ask them questions. The more you use critical thinking and question things, the quicker their scam logic falls apart. Ask why, ask things that only the real caller would know.  
     
    You can also modify this one for other situations as well, such as emails or text messages. The difference is you ask yourself instead of the person on the phone. Ask questions aloud, break down the situation before doing anything. Always take time to think, being rash and jumping through hoops for someone without thinking is usually a bad idea. 
     
  • Call Back

    This is another useful one for phone scams. This uses the same principle as the Amazon login from earlier. If you receive a call from someone you don’t know, like your bank, and they request information from you, just say you will call them right back. One of the biggest tools that phone scams have is that spoofing phone numbers is trivial. They can make it look like you are receiving a call from your bank or from the CRA/IRS. If you are the one who calls then you can be sure that you are connected to the right place.

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Illustration depicting people working on building a website on a large laptop

 

Congratulations starting on your journey as a small business owner! As you navigate the waters and try to stop your head from spinning, we figured it would be a great time to get your feet wet on the steps to building a great website for your small business.

 

Here at REM Web Solutions, we provide you with everything you need to design, build, and support your website, we have compiled a list of services that we offer to help get you started and some key information to ensuring your website works best for you.

 


 

Icon depicting a desktop monitor with 'www' on it

 

Domain Name

Choosing a great domain name seems easier than you think, however it is critical that your domain name is easy to remember, is relative to your brand and company name and chosen with search engine optimization (SEO) in mind.

  1. Avoid special characters. Typically, your domain name shouldn’t have numbers or hyphens in it, word only domain names are easier to remember and have less chance of user error.

  2. Using the correct domain extension is also extremely important. You should always try to make your domain a .com unless it’s a .org, .gov, or .edu

  3. Less is best. Having a short and concise domain is easier to remember and far more user friendly. Remember, the odds of you using your domain for email addresses are high – which means less typing for those trying to reach you. When creating marketing material having your website’s domain name short will also allow you to design with less noise.

  4. Keep it simple by making it easy to spell without any slang or odd wording.

  5. When deciding what your domain should be, try to keep it nonspecific to your product or service. This gives you the opportunity to continue using it if your company decides to branch out with product/service offerings.

  6. Google it, once you come up with a domain, google it – this allows you to determine if there is a similar website based on the domain. You want to make sure your website and business stands out.

  7. Your domain should be SEO friendly, meaning it should include keywords and locations. A great example would be “kitchenercupcakes.com.”

 

 


 

Icon depicting a website server with a check mark next to it

 

Website Hosting and Support

When choosing the company that is going to host your website, it’s incredibly important to know what you’re paying for. When you’re purchasing your domain, you are effectively in a hosting contract with that specific company. If you build your website on their platform or another platform then you’re in a contract with that company. Separating your services could potentially cause you headache in the long run, you want to make sure that your hosting provider can support you all around.

 

At REM Web Solutions we provide you with everything that you need to get your business’ website up and running. I’ll break down the services for you:

 

Domain Management

What does domain management really entail? Well, in the first part of this post we talked about choosing your domain. Once you have chosen something you have to purchase it and register the domain with a Registrar. Most companies that offer domain management, have accounts with these registrars that allow them to register the domain on behalf of a client. At REM Web Solutions, we have accounts with two main registrars, we purchase domains for you, handle the renewals, act as the admin for you so you don’t have to worry about updating nameservers.

 

DNS Hosting

Once you have your domain chosen and registered, the next step is to have your hosting provider set up your DNS hosting. Having the same hosting provider host your DNS is one of the most important decisions you will make. In the event of your site not functioning properly, email not sending, etc., DNS investigation is typically your first plan of action. Your hosting provider should be more than capable to help you manage your DNS settings, and update them when required. At REM Web Solutions, DNS hosting is part of your package when you’re a client of ours and we’re available to you during our support hours to make sure any update required can be completed for you with ease.

 

Website Hosting

Having a reputable company host your website is imperative. When you’re shopping around for a company to do your website hosting, it’s beneficial to you to understand how your website is being hosted. For example, once you’ve built your site, are backups being made of your data in the event of downtime? How secure is your website on the company’s servers? In the event that you need to make fundamental changes to your website is the company ready to meet your needs and potential demands as you grow? Working with a hosting company who can provide you this type of information is imperative. Don’t be afraid to ask.

 

Support

Once you have clearly defined the hosting aspect of the company you’re doing business with, be sure to ask them about the amount of support that is available to you. Building/designing a new website is a challenging thing. There may be moments when you’re trying to change your website, or have it function in a specific way and you’re hitting roadblocks. Having a support team available to you is crucial, especially in the beginning. At REM Web Solutions, our support team is one that we are proud of, we are dedicated to the success of your business. Majority of people aren’t designers or developers, so having a team that’s willing to advocate for you is half the battle.

 

 


 

Icon depicting a pen on top of a web page

 

Content Management Systems

As defined by HubSpot, a content management system (CMS) is a software application that allows users to build and manage a website without having to code it from scratch or know how to code at all. For more detailed information on content management systems, I suggest reading this blog. When building your website for your small business it’s essential to choose one that works best for you. There are many different ones out there that are designed for different reasons – budget and user-friendly platforms are the first that come to mind. Here at REM, we have built our own custom content management system ([email protected]) that is easy to use, adaptable and comes with a bunch of support to help you navigate it.

 

 


 

Icon depicting thumbs up and arrows pointing up

 

Create an Engaging Website

When designing and building your website you want to make sure that you drive engagement. You want viewers to have a positive impression when they visit your website. Make sure that your brand is clearly captured through the design of the website, this allows your messaging to be well received. In addition, not only should your website clearly describe your products and services, your graphics and fonts should be simple and easy to read. One thing to be cautious on is ensuring your graphics are optimized for fast loading; search engines decrease your ranking if they are slow.

 

Navigation and Pages

One of the things that makes your website easy to use for viewers and potential customers is having a clearly thought-out navigation. Designing a navigation that allows viewers to find information easily is crucial, your navigation should link to the most important pages on your website, which typically are:

  • Home

  • About Us

  • Products/Services

  • Management Team

  • Contact Us

  • Terms of Use

  • Site Maps

  • Privacy Policy

 

These pages can be linked in your header or footer navigation. If you have other pages that are important to your business, they should be added into your navigation as well. Our design and marketing teams at REM are here to help you create and design your navigation and pages to ensure that you’re creating the best content for your site. We’ll guide you on best practices to ensure your business is clearly and effectively presented to the rest of the world.

 

 


 

Icon depicting a web page in a gear cog

 

Maintenance

Once your site has been built, it is incredibly important that you create and add new content on a regular basis. Search engines give higher rankings to sites that are continuously updated. One of the best ways to achieve this is by blogging, other options include updating customer testimonials, creating a news section on your website and updating it with pertinent news about your products or services. When updating your website, you want to make sure that you’re still using design elements that are consistent with your brand.

 

 


 

In Conclusion

When building a website for your small business there are a lot of things to consider. Remember, the key is to have your website work for you. Your website acts as your resume to the rest of the world, potential, and existing clients. Your website should be a tool that you are using to generate business and a significant amount of thought should be put into the process. Bringing all of the pieces of your business together can be quite the daunting task, however, we’re here to help you.

 

If you’re not sure where to start or if you want to make changes to your website feel free to contact us!

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Illustration of two people next to an NFT coin and digital items

 

Have you heard about the hype on NFT’s? Well to be honest, I surely missed the memo on this new form of blockchain-based trading. Did what I just say make any sense? Probably not. I’m still doing my best to figure this one out and it seems like I’m not the only one on the struggle bus. So let me try to decipher what I learned.

 

NFT stands for Non-Fungible Token.

 


 

Fungible vs. Non-Fungible

I think the first thing we should attempt to understand is the difference between something that is fungible and something that is not.

 

Fungible

According to Investopedia, “Fungibility is the ability of a good or asset to be interchanged with other individual goods or assets of the same type. Fungible assets simplify the exchange and trade processes, as fungibility implies equal value between the assets.”

 

Examples of physical assets that are fungible would be the dollar, gold and casino chips. If you exchange any of these for something else, the value remains the same. If I have $500 in casino chips, I have $500 in cash. Instances of digital fungible assets would be Bitcoin and frequent flyer points.

 

Non-Fungible

A non-fungible asset is something that can’t be substituted and the value is not interchangeable. Examples of physical non-fungible assets are houses and paintings. Instances of non-fungible digital assets are video game skins and copyrights.

 

Token

Now that we somewhat have a grasp on the difference between fungible and non-fungible, let us try to understand the concept of these “tokens.” A token is a digitalized certificate that is secured by a blockchain database. As defined on Investopedia, “…crypto tokens are cryptocurrency tokens. Cryptocurrencies or virtual currencies are denominated into these tokens, which reside on their own blockchains. Blockchains are special databases that store information in blocks that are then chained or linked together. This means that crypto tokens, which are also called crypto assets, represent a certain unit of value.”

 

Non-Fungible Token

I think I’m making some progress here, so let’s tackle the definition of a non-fungible token provided by Investopedia once again. “Non-fungible tokens or NFTs are cryptographic assets on blockchain with unique identification codes and metadata that distinguish them from each other. Unlike cryptocurrencies, they cannot be traded or exchanged at equivalency. This differs from fungible tokens like cryptocurrencies, which are identical to each other and, therefore, can be used as a medium for commercial transactions.”

 

That is a lot of words that now make some sort of sense to me, and I will do my best to give you an analogy that hopefully gives you a bit more clarity. When I read through this definition the first thing that comes to mind is sports cards, whether baseball, basketball, etc. Each card holds a specific value and that value is determined by the owner and purchaser. Majority of the time, there is not a dollar value attached when individuals are trading sports cards. This example would be considered a physical non-fungible token.

 

The Digital Hype

Now this is where I sometimes get lost, when discussing digital NFT’s—which can be pretty much anything, such as music, drawings, GIFs, etc.—I’m going to use digital art to illustrate such as a digital artist creates an image and sells it as an NFT; they are selling the original file. Yes, you can right click and download copied versions of it, BUT it is not the original. Think of it this way, Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa: you can go to the market this weekend a purchase a copy of it for $10, right? However, where is the original masterpiece and how much is it worth? Right now, this piece of art is hanging in the highly secured Louvre Museum and is apparently valued at somewhere around $700 million USD.

 

In 2021 the digital artist Beeple created and sold the most expensive NFT artwork. The name of the piece is “Everdays: the First 5000 Days.” It was auctioned at Christie’s starting at $100 and eventually sold for $69.3 million. This non-fungible digital token’s worth in 2021 is astonishing, however the trend is continuing and becoming a fantastic way for digital artists to make money.

 


 

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably still scratching your head in disbelief and you’re not quite sure how to make of this information. I believe as cryptocurrency evolves things will become clearer. I am currently in the process of purchasing my first NFT and will share my thoughts in a later post!

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

3D Illustration of a computer with office and website-related icons around it

 

It’s been over a year of some businesses struggling to stay alive as a result of the pandemic. This year has taught us how to restructure our teams, building work from home infrastructures, taking every precaution in the book for essential workers that are required to physically be around each other. This year has truly taken a toll on our businesses, unfortunately some were forced to close their doors, but many were able to adapt, and with the inevitable changes that we face moving forward we see new opportunities and new businesses rising from the ashes of COVID-19.

 

As we continue to soldier forward, now more than ever is the perfect time to re-evaluate your business’ online presence. Do you have one? Do you have social media accounts? If you do, are you easy to find? Are you attractive to your target audience? Are you reaching your target audience? These are a lot of questions I know, but having an online presence is the most important thing you can do for your business today and it’s extremely important to make sure you’re doing it right.

 

Websites

I know this sounds strange, since most companies do have websites, but it’s something that we need to bring up, having an updated website is incredibly important these days. Here are a few questions I suggest you ask yourself in regards to your website:

  1. When was the last time you did a redesign on your website?

  2. Is the information that you have on it accurate with the services and products that you have to offer?

  3. Is your site responsive – meaning does your site automatically change based on the device it’s being used on?

  4. Is your contact information up to date?

  5. Do you have links to your active social media accounts on your website?

  6. How are you ranking in terms of Search Engine Optimization?

  7. Is your website AODA compliant? Should it be?

  8. How are you informing your clients of changes on how you do business?

These are all very important questions that you need to be asking about your website, and if you don’t have a website yet, these are most definitely questions that you want to ask when designing your new website.

 

Search Engine Optimization

This is one of the most common questions that we are asked about from our clients and prospective clients: “How do I get my website to show up on Google’s first page?” Search engine ranking is one of the most sought-after results and there are things you can do on your website to help increase your ranking such as having a responsive website, blogging, redesigning your content to ensure you have proper heading structures in place, and optimizing images that you have on your website. If you’re looking to boost your ranking, give us a shout – we’re here to help!

 

Social Media Marketing

The concept of social media marketing for businesses has really taken off over the past year. Businesses have turned to social media applications such as Instagram and TikTok to attract potential clients and highlight their products and services. Are you making the most of these applications to help generate business?

 

eCommerce

In a previous blog we touched on some of the eCommerce tools that we have available to you, with the increase of curbside pickup methods, businesses are now required to offer their products available to purchase online and picked up at a specified date and time. We have built solutions to help businesses meet the needs of their customers – allowing them to browse online, request quotes, and make purchases. This functionality has almost become an absolute requirement for the survival of businesses.

 

In conclusion the reality of face-to-face interactions is dwindling and it’s incredibly important that the world can find you online, not only should they be able to find you, but they should be able to KNOW you based on your website, social media, SEO and eCommerce platforms. Having a well-rounded online presence will directly increase your sales and we’re here to help you make sure you’re well prepared to tackle the new normal of business. Aside from our tools, our team is here to support you throughout your journey, make educated recommendations, provide you with industry knowledge to help increase your profits and guide you through your marketing efforts.

 

If you’re an existing client and are looking for suggestions on ways that you can improve your online presence, or if you’re a new business looking for some guidance feel free to reach out to us at [email protected]. We want to help you be the best you can be!

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Illustration depicting startup business woman using a laptop

 

When I originally started this blog, I wanted to discuss the qualities that make up a great entrepreneur or even a little how-to guide which led to me into a rabbit hole of TED Talk videos from entrepreneurs themselves. They all started out with pros and cons of being entrepreneurs, long hours are required but you can take vacations whenever you want. You don’t have to work for someone else… you’re your own boss! The passion you have for your product/service will outweigh how much money you make, because it’s all about you making a difference – and that is what Entrepreneurship is all about right? Well in my opinion, not really.

 

I feel like these days everyone is an entrepreneur from small businesses to social media influencers, however I beg to ask the question… what is the definition of an entrepreneur? Do we really know what it actually means to be an entrepreneur or has this “job title” become a buzzword for many people carrying out creative ways to make money? This led me to look up the definition of an entrepreneur and according to Merriam-Webster the definition is:

 


One who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise.


 

This changes the way we identify entrepreneurs, doesn’t it? I have been extremely lucky over the years to meet many individuals who are entrepreneurs, I also have been very humbled to meet individuals who identified themselves as entrepreneurs, however based on the above definition they would fall under the category of self-starters – in my opinion of course. I have had the opportunity to work with many start-ups during my career path and without a doubt the entrepreneurs I’ve watched grow over the years have held the title with reverence.

 

As I mentioned the perks of entrepreneurship earlier on, I found most articles I read on the subject did not outline the requirements of an individual involved with being an entrepreneur. Some of you reading may be thinking about starting your own business and some of you likely already have. So, let’s break down the most important requirements of being a successful entrepreneur.

 

Perspective

Being an entrepreneur is no joke. The amount of work and responsibility that falls on business owners require you to always be on point. When starting out your business not only do you need a great idea, you also need to ensure that people are going to buy into your product – you need to make a profit to be sustainable. So yes, you will find happiness in your success, but you do also need to make money, and typically in the early stages of your business making money is not something you’re going to do. Some of the most successful entrepreneurs have the ability to maintain perspective on their business as whole and work extremely hard through the tough times, they understand the importance of the flexibility required to be a self-starter and continue to break through barriers against all odds.

 

Thinking Lean

A couple years ago I read a book called The Lean Startup by Eric Ries, and it really did change my outlook on entrepreneurship. Instead of me attempting to relay the movement in this blog I’m going to leave this video here for you to digest. I highly recommend the book and suggest you read it as well:

 

 

Re-Investing

Once you’ve established yourself as an entrepreneur and your business model is now profitable, one of the most important things you can do for yourself is not spend all of your profits on your personal life. It’s tempting I know, but the best thing you can do for yourself is to continue to re-invest into your business. Look for areas to improve, whether it be product development, support materials, marketing efforts, etc. If you get into the habit of putting some of your profit back into your business, your return will be far greater in the long run.

 

Educating Yourself

Being an entrepreneur does not stop at “I know this thing and I’m just going to run with it forever.” It is crucial for businessmen/businesswomen to practice continuous learning. Whether it’s learning new management skills, industry trends in your field, attending workshops in areas that aren’t your strong points. To be a successful entrepreneur requires you to have overall knowledge, it requires you to always be informed, by improving your skill set you’ll accumulate better results for your business and prepare yourself to scale effectively and efficiently.

 

Taking Risks

This one is probably the most important of them all. It’s imperative that you take risks. Keep in mind that I’m referring to calculated risks. Make use of your network, have advisors and coaches in your pocket to help you evaluate risks before you jump into something – but at the end of the day, the greatest entrepreneurs take risks and come out smiling in the end!

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Red mailbox with lots of envelopes flying out of it

 

One of the most common support questions that we get at REM involves our clients email hosting, and we get it – if something isn’t working right with your business email it can be rather frustration. The most frequent issue that support receives is our clients reaching their mailbox capacity and cannot receive emails.

 


 

How can you prevent this from happening? Let’s chat:

 

Clear out your Mailbox

More often than not we tend to keep emails for a long period of time. I have a really bad habit of not clearing out my mailbox. On a weekly basis I go into my mailbox and delete any old emails that I no longer need, this include a quick look through any folders. Once I’ve deleted emails that are no longer required, I always be sure to empty the deleted folder as well!

 


 

Use a 3rd Party Email Client

This is one thing that you should be doing regardless, REM gives you access to your email via a webmail account, it’s a basic platform that allows you to login and manage your email account. We do highly suggest that you configure your email addresses with a 3rd party Email Client such as Outlook, Gmail, or Thunderbird. Using these clients allows you to extend the use of your emails – it also helps you manage your storage. Most of these clients allow you to create personal folders which will remove them from the webmail and store them locally opposed to on our servers.

 


 

Increase your Support/Hosting Package

If you’ve exhausted all of these options, I would definitely suggest talking to our support team to determine if you can increase your mailbox storage or increase your hosting package to provide you with more email storage.

 


 

If you have concerns about consistently reaching your email capacity, please reach out to us at [email protected], we’ll help you determine next steps and review your package options.

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

calendar with the date of January 2021 on it

 

In a recent article published by a reputable news source there was some information that was incorrectly provided and we’re here to set the story straight. The article stated that the deadline for all businesses that were legally required to have AODA compliant is in June 2021 – this is false.

 

As of January 2021, all websites for companies in Ontario with over 50 employees must adhere to the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.

 

What are the ramifications if your business is not compliant? It’s a pretty hefty fine– executives can be fined up to $100,000 each day a site remains non-compliant.

 

If you’re not sure whether or not your website is or should be compliant, feel free to reach out to us. Also, for more information on the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) feel free to check out some of our blogs that highlight key information!

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn
This is a headshot of Shauna Ramsaroop.

Woman using a laptop with the Webwizard login in the screen

 

Now that I have a few training sessions under my belt upon my return to REM, I’d like to share my experiences with you as a trainer, and as a fellow student. Once we have designed, built, tested and reviewed your website, we typically reach out and schedule a training session with you. Pre-pandemic, we would invite you into our awesome office and hangout in the boardroom. Nowadays, we’re inviting you into our homes and conducting training sessions virtually.

 

Depending on the site we’ve built for you, sometimes we split your training sessions into two parts, one 1.5-hour session for our standard modules and a secondary session for anything custom on your site, for example – eCommerce. As a student, I know first-hand that there is a lot of information provided to you, and it really is difficult to absorb new material. As a trainer I know the majority of what is presented to you in the training session doesn’t quite resonate until you’ve had a chance to play with the tools. 

 

Here are some tips to help you through the training session:

 

Taking notes is NOT essential

I know this is slightly breaking every rule when it comes to learning. However, we have compiled training documents for you and will send them after the session is complete for your reference. I honestly believe, you will get more out of the training session if you’re focused on how to navigate our tools.

 

Ask questions

Our trainers won’t get upset if you interrupt us. I promise. If you’re unclear of how something works based on the way we’ve presented it to you, ask us to clarify or explain it in a different way. Remember, we want you to succeed.

 

Provide us with hypotheticals

Our trainers do our best to understand your business, however we are limited, during your training sessions, give us examples of the results you want to achieve and we’ll show you how.

 

Once your training session is over, you’ve received the training documents go into [email protected] and update your content, make changes and get a feel for how it works. Remember, that’s not the end of the road for your learning either.

 

If you’re trying to change something and you’re stuck email us at [email protected] – we’re here to help.

 

Subscribe to this Blog Like on Facebook Tweet this! Share on LinkedIn

Contributors

Shauna Ramsaroop
77
October 22, 2021
Show Shauna's Posts
Rob Matlow
109
October 8, 2021
Show Rob's Posts
Sean McParland
18
August 20, 2021
Show Sean's Posts
Christine Votruba
29
August 12, 2021
Show Christine's Posts
Ryan Covert
48
July 26, 2019
Show Ryan's Posts
Sean Sanderson
63
July 23, 2019
Show Sean's Posts
Matt Stern
4
July 16, 2019
Show Matt's Posts
Sean Legge
1
June 28, 2019
Show Sean's Posts
Todd Hannigan
47
November 13, 2018
Show Todd's Posts