MYOB training course from $39

Why would you travel to a training centre, spend a day of your time and cram the information into your brain, when you can watch the EzyLearn MYOB training course videos over and over as many times as you want for a fraction of the price! The MYOB online training courses are available at www.myobcourse.com at more than 50% off their normal prices, PLUS, if you purchase the MYOB accounting software from us (Accounting Plus version), we’ll give you the training for free!Best of all, you can watch 20 videos for free, just to see if you like our training style. So, what are you waiting for? Register for free and watch videos for free and if you like what you see, enrol for over 50% discount. 

Use social bookmarking and email referrals to make yourself popular

Do you have a website? Want visitors to tell their friends about it? Social Bookmarking is the new way of spreading the word about your website (ie. business). I wrote an article in July 2008 (click here to see) about how quickly word can spread, especially when website visitors can let all their friends know about your website using websites like Facebook, MySpace and other not so well known but still important websites like dig.com, reddit.com etc.  Continue reading Use social bookmarking and email referrals to make yourself popular

How the Apple iPhone converted me to Macs

I thought it was time to write some general interest news. Having used Windows computers for the last 20 years, it was with reluctance that I accepted an iPod to have a play with. I know, computer trainer for 15 years and just received (not bought) an iPod to play with. Loved it so much that I decided to buy an iPhone as my next mobile phone/camera/calendar/music storage etc….One of the best things that Apple have done is link their iPods and iPhones to their iTunes music player. iTunes not only organises and plays music, but acts as the syncing software to ensure that you have what you want on your iPhone, this includes images, videos, music, calendar entries, emails etc. Another great features of iTunes is the massive library of songs which you can purchase individually for a couple dollars, but the most amazing thing I found was that you can also buy software for the price of songs.I downloaded a program called SpeakEasy for $2.49 and am now able to make audio recordings on my iPhone. Now, OK, I had that same functionality with the last phone I had, an iPaq, running Windows mobile software because all the functionality was built-in.  In other words, it was FREE, but the amazing thing about the iPhone software is that it’s only $2.49, no minimum transaction size and no extra charges. How else could you actually buy software that cheap? This is the beginning of the next software explosion.Why will there be a software explosion? Well, if software can be sold easily for as little as the price of a song, there will be more incentive for entrepreneurial software developers to write software programs with the home of selling much more software through sites like iTunes. This will be encouraged by the fact that devices, like the iPhone, won’t come equipped with everything on them but you’ll have to download software to use the features you want, like video for example… you can’t take videos using your iPhone as it comes in the box, but there are several softare programs out there which will allow you to. All the hardware is there, it’s just the software that’s needed.Finally with the ease of using the iPhone and it’s delicate touching interface, the logical navigation to get things done and the ease of connecting to your computer, I can see a huge rush towards consumers buying Macintosh computers. Think I’ll go along and check out my nears Apple SuperStore today 😉  

How word spreads like wildfire on the net

These days if there is a good product on the internet the news spreads like wildfire, but why? How is it that word spreads to millions of people in such a short time? With Social media, social bookmarking (we have that on our sites using the AddThis service… so make sure you use it and tell your friends about us), blogs, Vlogs, Wikis and RSS you can tell someone and they can tell someone else and before you know it, your word of mouth recommendations get to thousands of people.

I found a great site that teaches you in plain english how these website work. Please send me an email or reply to this post with your comments. Here’s the link:

http://www.youtube.com/user/leelefever 

Enjoy,
Steve Slisar

$30 per year is a great number for your telephone

The days of paying Telstra (or even Optus) charging exorbitant amounts per month for line rental and high call costs are over. There are new companies popping up every day in Australia who can help you save a lot of money in your phone calls. The biggest savings I have discovered recently are the costs to national phone numbers and mobiles. These calls are measured in 30 sec intervals by mobile carrier to make them look attractive, plus they have what they call a flagfall (cost to get the call connected). Not so with most VoIP providers.

The VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) phone company that I use is MyNetFone and I am on their smallest plan. It is such a small plan that there is no monthly fee, it’s almost like a PrePaid Service. If you already have a broadband service you can purchase a VoIP phone adapter for less than $60 and take advantage of no monthly costs, untimed national calls for 12.5c and calls to mobile at 27c per minute (not per 30 seconds). Here is a list of the different plans that are made available by MyNetFone: https://www.mynetfone.com.au/residential-voip-solutions/service-plan-choices/

A great feature of this service is that you can have voicemails emailed to your email address and open them as an audio attachment, you can get a DID (Direct In Dial) number for any and every state of the year for only $30 each. You can sound like a national company and have all your calls answer in one place (even calls from New Zealand).

Finally, you can check on every single call that you have made for the last year or more. I checked back to April last year which is when I started using the service and every single call out that I made on the service was listed with the person I called and how much the call cost!

Maybe things will change as the company gets bigger, but this is some of the great news that is coming from the telecommunications industry with the advent of VoIP.

Want to be a ‘B’ keeper

Why did we single out the letter B? Well, because it is a combination of Business and book (as in Book keeper). The real reason is we wanted to have a catchy heading to make you read this BLOG post. But if you are serious about becoming a bookkeeper then you may want to take a look at the Wikipedia definition of a bookkeeper (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bookkeeper)…. Sounds pretty boring doesn’t it?? Still, a necessary evil in our modern capitalist world, and a great way to earn a living as an independent contractor. Yay!!

The real reason for this blog is to let you know that we have started a social networking site for people who are learning, know how to use or want to know how to use MYOB Accounting software (the best selling accounting software in Australia).

To join the network, get to meet other bookkeepers and improve your knowledge please feel free to join and build a ‘sphere of influence’ that will help you provide a better service to your customers and build a level of confidence to perform at your peak (great marketing words aren’t they). Apart from the humour it is important for upcoming MYOB users to get to know other users, build a community and improve their skills in an ever changing taxation environment.

The website address is myobtraining.ning.com I hope you can join us 🙂 and share your wisdom.

Sketch your own website banner

Want to have better looking graphics on your website? Now you can do it yourself with a great website that helps you create banners for your website.

This website is just like an image editing program, but it’s on the Internet rather that installed on your own computer. This means that you can access and use it for free from anywhere. This website is indicative of the growing trend of software applications that you can use on the Internet. They call this type of application “Software As a Service” and it seems to be the way that all programs are going because the owner of the program has complete control of usage.

I hope I didn’t go off track then, but I find “Software As a Service” a very interesting business model… It’s like hotmail, gmail and most online applications, in that you are offered something for free for a while and then when you realise just how valuable it is in your daily life. It starts to become important and (most interestingly) valuable to you and it’s probably at that point when the industry will reach the stage (that they are touting will come), the stage where these “valuable” service become “paid for” services.

Anyway, back on track, the good news it that these services are currently free so get to know them, learn how to use this type of program and get some better results on your website.

The website that I’m talking about it www.bannersketch.com

Please feel free to subscribe to my blog and leave a comment 🙂 Steve

Create your own flash intros for free online

Here is another example of everything becoming free online. I’ve just discovered a website where you can create your own flash animated intros without having any experience using Flash.

You can create either html or swf files from the site and if you decide you want to use more of the features that they have to offer, you can join the site for less than $5 per month. Have fun with it.

http://www.flashberry.com/builder.html

Specific is terrific for your website and online marketing

Many website owners believe that they can create content and plonk it anywhere on their website and they’ll be inundated with emails and calls. They are missing the fundamental fact that people who are browsing the internet have potential 10-30 other website to visit until they find the one that they think is the best.

Here’s a couple examples of the goals I have for some of my websites.

  1. Get website visitors off your home page (otherwise they’ll bounce)
  2. Get people to take a short tour of what you can do for them (using images and maybe audio)
  3. Give people a reason to interact with your website (like a free sample or information report)
  4. Know the website goal and how to measure it (eg. the number of people visiting the website compared to the number of people who actually get to your Contact/subscription/ordering page etc).

Some fantastic news for you is that Google has all the tools to help you attract website visitors, funnel them to goal pages and measure your success. Advertising with Google costs you money, but most of the other tools are completely free (like Google website optimiser and analytics).

A great aspect about Google Adwords is that although it costs you money, you actually attract very specific potential customers to your website, customers who have typed in very specific search words and/or phrases. Better still you only pay for actual clicks to your website and not the people who just see your add.

So remember that when you promote yourself online you are looking for people who want something very specific so you need to find them and then funnel them to your own specific goals for them.

If you need some help please call me on 0413 007 481 or email steve@slisar.com.au

Landing Pages to focus your website

A landing page is a web page that contains specific information on it that will appeal to website visitors who are looking for something specific.

For example, if I send an email newsletter which promotes Microsoft Excel Training and I insert a link to my home page (eg: www.slisar.com.au) then people who click on and follow the link from the newsletter may be a little disappointed. Why? Because they were expecting to find information about Microsoft Excel Training but now need to navigate around my website to find the information.

So, I create special “landing pages” that cover a specific topic and when a website visitor gets to the page they are pleasantly surprised because they see all the information they were searching for. This is an example of a landing page: http://slisar.com/main/page_landing_learn_microsoft_excel_online.html .

You could put special links on your landing page that “funnel” website visitors to exactly where you want them to go and thus acheiving your website goals. Notice that the URL of the above “landing page” contains keywords that are used to search for the service offered? This is one aspect of Search Engine Optimisation and makes your website attractive and “Relevant” to Search Engines.

After creating some specific landing pages I can create ads on Google Adwords, Microsofts adCentre or promote these ‘landing pages’ in email marketing campaigns so that when people click on them, they get a very specific response and are funnelled to the webpage that you want them to get to.

Creating these pages is possible using the 123ezy website builder and I have used this technique to successfully attract thousands of people to my websites and online services. If you need some help with your website design or Internet marketing, please contact me in Australia on 0413 007 481 or email me at steve@slisar.com.au

Sell in the US – no warehousing or shipping

Have you heard about “Drop Shipping”? It is used to describe the process of YOU selling a product without having to buy it first, store it or deliver it, and some people are making thousands and thousand of dollars doing it.

The concept has been around in the US for years and although it sounds simple, you are best to know a little bit about the products you sell. Why? Because you will be the person that customer call if there is a problem…. you are the middle man 🙂

So if you’ve always wanted to operate your own business, drop shipping is a fantastic way to operate a home based business selling products over the Internet without the hassle of buying, store and then having to deliver products. The best part is that the Internet allows anyone to operate a business in any country, set up a Google Adwords account and start promoting your new business… How easy is that?

When your website starts to get some great traffic, you can then act as an affiliate for many other companies and earn an income from links at your website… It’s called Affiliate Marketing and I’ll write a bit more about that in a future article.

If you want to learn a bit more about Drop Shipping, check out this website: http://www.dropshipperpro.com/cp/howitworks.html 

If you want to learn more about Affiliate Marketing, check this website out: www.clixgalore.com.au OR take a look at the pioneers of Affiliate Marketing, Amazon (http://affiliate-program.amazon.com/gp/associates/join)

Happy selling

Want to use bigger words in your letters and correspondence?

Have you ever wondered how people get to know about new big words? These big words are almost like a tool, used in the daily grind of work and communication with other humans and they can often lift the status of the person wielding the words. But now it is easier than you think to do it yourself.

Do you work at a computer each day? Well, you have instant access to dictionary.com, don’t you and then when someone says that you are being supine in your approach to learning new big words, you can ask them not to be so pejorative, but to leave the room precipitously.

Happy Big Word day!

Auctions! Exciting? Ebay – everyone’s pouncing at it

In the Neanderthal period of the Internet, when everything ‘internet related’ was worth 50 times it’s commercial value, no one understood it’s real value, compared to bricks and mortar businesses. Anyone who had computer programming experience was writing software programs for the internet.

Online auctions were the buzz because rather than someone just searching for a product to buy, contacting the seller and then negotiating over the phone (like we all used to do with the Trading Post … “tell’em they’re joking about that price”), online auctions made you come back to the website time and time again to see if you’d won the auction.

Ebay used some fantastic, “operate your own business” campaigns to make ordinary people realise that they could operate a business from home just by selling unwanted items and as a result bulk sellers make about 80% of all sales in online auctions. This is where we meet the next fork in the road for online auctions. Ebay with it’s market clout is trying to force all their sellers to use only Paypal as the method of payment, PayPal is an online payment system owned by Ebay.

In view of this turmoil, other online auction websites are promoting themselves like ravens to get some of the spoils of this turmoil and one of the biggest launches is that of Telstra owned business, Sensis, which owns the Trading Post (an other big Australian online portals like the Yellow and White pages).

If you want to check out some other online auctions here is a list:

http://www.tradingpost.com.au/ 

http://graysonline.com.au/ 

http://oztion.com.au/ 

http://webshop.cashconverters.com.au/items 

and a new service that is currently going to be launched: http://offerme.com.au/ 

One more thing that you might like to know is that almost anyone can now start an online auction website because the software that allows you to create is available for free! Yes, the Open Source movement has created many software programs that take all the hard work out of setting up and auction site of your own…. all you have to do is add products.

Happy buying and selling

Who wants to create their own movies?

Movies are something that you may not have thought about creating for yourself. I mean, why would you? Who’s going to see them anyway?

I helped a client create a movie from their last ski trip only last week and it tooks us less than 4 hours from the client not knowing anything about Microsoft Movie Maker. Not only did we create the movie, but we shortened selected video clips, created transitions between clips, muted the audio from the video clips and even put two sound tracks going in the background to add a real ‘feel’ to the movie.

When I say video clips, these are snippets of video that we get from a video camera (and let’s face it, a normal digital camera is also a video camera these days) and combine in an order that we choose and re-arrange if needed.

Finally we converted the video into a movie file format (just a  couple clicks) and before you know it, the movie is ready not only to burn to a CD, but also to easily publish to YouTube for the whole world to see your creation (if you want them to). Thought I’d just throw in a small comment here … more and more businesses are creating their own video/movie style ads and placing them on YouTube to build awareness and it’s easier to do than you think..

Let me know if creating a movie is something that you’d like to learn more about?

How do you sell your household stuff “online today”?

The reason for the question is that our Dee Why office is closing and we have a whole bunch of things that we want to get rid of, but it is not worth going through the trouble of listing each one and paying for each listing in an auction site like ebay.

We have things like filing cabinets, office chairs, office desks, cork boards, folding machine, VCR player, lightbox, paper binding machines (2), air conditioning unit, display stands etc.

My first step was to do a search for some of these things at Google.com.au, this provides a valuable first step as it shows you the various classifieds sites that people use to sell their things. Here are a list of some free classifieds sites… there are many more than you think:

www.craigslist.com.au

http://sydney.gumtree.com.au/

http://cracker.com.au/

http://www.annonz.net/?r-New-South-Wales

http://www.dclassifieds.com.au/public/main.aspx

http://www.ozfreeonline.com/

http://www.freead.com.au/PN_zClassifieds.html

http://www.elist.com.au/

http://www.search4stuff.com.au/

http://www.localnote.com.au/

http://www.simpletrade.com.au/ 

http://www.adoos.com.au/ 

There are also websites where you can go to list your business like http://sydneyexchange.com.au/ .

What I found most interesting is that people are even using online image storage areas like picasa (part of Google), www.flickr.com  and others to show the images of their products and then provide their contact details. Just like this lady who is moving house: http://picasaweb.google.com/householdgoods/FurnitureForSale

So, there’s a little bit to think about next time you want to get rid of any household or office ‘stuff’. Happy selling…. by the way, i also used our email newsletter to let people know that we have things for sale 🙂

Office Equipment sale on 3rd May

We have a lot of equipment that we no longer need in our move from Dee Why to Brookvale and they will be available for sale on Saturday 3rd May from 1pm to 4pm. Items available include: Computers, monitors, keyboards, powerboards, power extension, power cables, printers, fax machine, folding machine, binding machines, water cooler, Taymar display stands, office desks, office chairs, bar fridge, coffee maker, filing cabinets and more….

The address is 26 Oaks Ave, Dee Why (opposite Woolworths)… see you there