Guide to Booking Holidays Online

travel imageThese days, when you want to travel and you have no time to arrange your travel details, all you have to do is to look for online travel agents. Wherever you want to go, these people will make things a lot easier for you.

All you need to do is to say where you want to go, when you want to go and how much your budget limit is. The online agent will then arrange everything for you. You just have to keep the payment receipts and be there during the actual date.

This helps you a lot in saving time and money. Just before you seal the deal with a particular online travel agent, here are some things that you need to remember:

  • Take note of the hidden costs. When you are presented the total price of the holiday package, you might close the deal right away since the amount is too low. However, the moment they add up all extra costs, then everything goes higher. You might even be surprised with how much you are to pay. Therefore before closing the deal, tell them to be honest about the total cost.
  • Check if the online agent has a license to operate. Even if they are just doing travel arrangements online, they still have a local office. Therefore, they need a permit to run the business. If you transact with a company that does not operate legally, you won’t have anything to run after should they refuse to help you out. If they are registered and something wrong took place, you can file for complain.
  • Don’t keep on changing your mind. Before you say yes to a travel package, make sure that it is your final decision. Take note that if you want to change the date or the place, you might have to pay for extra cost. Unless something urgent came up, just stick with the original plan.
  • Don’t forget your travel insurance. Make sure that the travel package that you get has insurance in it. Otherwise, you have to look for another company that can provide an affordable insurance package for this trip.

Once you are done dealing with these details, you just have to wait for the actual trip. Bon Voyage!

Build Your Biz on the Internet for Less than $100

Top Ways to Promote your Business Online for Less Than $100

The Internet is the new medium to promote a business, regardless if the business is run online or off. It tells you many things on how you can use it to be known to your potential customers, but to truly establish online presence, you have to spend a significant amount for services you know nothing about, and only “techie” persons do.

However, there are  still many ways you can do to promote your business for less than a hundred dollar budget. The top three are as follows:

Pay Per Click Advertising

Most small business owners think that pay-per-click ads  are only ideal  for big companies that have a wider reach. They are wrong. They can actually take advantage of this form of marketing especially now that Google  has launched Google AdWords Express.

This is used to see what users key in if they are trying to look for something. The common phrases they type in the search box are determined, so as an advertiser, your ad will be plugged each time a searcher in your area uses such phrases.

People who are trying to look for service  similar to yours can be aware of your business name as it pops up on the search results. Pay per click ads are inexpensive and there are analytics to help you, so do not be afraid to try it.

Blogging

Today, cross-blogging is  a better term, or practice for affordable online marketing. This is true especially if you are running a web-based business. What you can do is send articles at various sites regularly,  so people can know your name or your logo.

Blogging is not about direct promotion of your product or service. You must provide meaningful information, something they can be interested about. You can submit blogs at sites similar to your niche and offer tips, how-to’s or about personal experiences.

If you are not very confident about your writing skills, you can always outsource. Ask fellow online entrepreneurs for recommendations. There are talented writers who can write for you at very reasonable rates, and they can make catchy articles that will not blatantly promote your business.

Social Media Marketing

Social media is not just about Facebook or Twitter, otherwise this strategy should not be included here because the two sites are offered for free.

You can try other professional sites such as LinkedIn, a site that allows business owners to create profiles to network with others. Members of LinkedIn can promote their activities and provide link to their main website. Through this site, you can generate leads and even potential business partners.

You can also make use of Yelp, a business directory complete with reviews and other information about numerous companies. Being listed here allows you to be searched by actual customers looking for services. Foursquare is another useful social networking site. Users can check-in to different locations using their smartphones or tablets.

You can create a page here and claim a venue. From there you can come up with promotions such as incentives to people checking into your location of offer privileges to the head of such location. Perhaps  the only expense you will need in social media marketing is when you ask an assistant to manage your accounts.

7 On-Page Tips to know in 2014

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is an ever-changing field of online advertising. There have been methods and varying techniques that proved to raise awareness about websites. They have all been created with the aim of getting the site on the top of those search pages. However, as was stated earlier, things always change and SEO is slowly changing in many ways. As a site owner, it’s inevitable that you learn about these evolutions to remain relevant. Here are some of the tips which will improve your site in the year 2014.

  1. Working on Keywords

Keywords will always be important in online advertising as it the method through which you establish your site’s niche. Of course, the thing about KWs is that there are thousands of them, and often, the most commonly repeated words in a niche are linked to more popular sites. This does not mean you should stop using KWs though; it just means you need to put more effort into your research.

  1. Search for the Definition of Search Entities

Search entities are Google’s answer to keywords qualms. At the same time, it is also designed to work well with Google Glass, which is the next phase of their tech release plan. The concept discusses how phrases will replace keywords. The research and news should provide some insights into the future of SEO.

  1. Use Google Adwords or Keyword Planner

A solid place to start would be Google KW planner, which is found in Google Adwords. You can use this program to further plot out which sets of words really matter to your site. Adwords can also help to further your plan as it will research the key ad words that keep sites afloat. From there, it’s easy to see where you can go.

  1. Planning the Splash Strategy

Okay, so you’ve managed to gather the most important KWs that are within your niche. Your next step should be to create a reasonable mid to long term plan regarding their landing page placement.  The first thing you’ll need to do is to target specific links to their specified pages. General terms like “Action RPG Game” or “Gardening Companies” will serve to target your landing pages and their categories. More specific KWs that mention brand will have to follow the same targeting strategy.

  1. Cleaning up the Content

Content cleanliness goes past spell checking, editing, and publication. For SEO, KWs are usually the subject of the content. So how exactly do you clean these posts up? Well, first off, you’ll need to cut down on the descriptive posts. Usually, a limited but accurate post can gain a lot more views than a 1,000-word article.

  1. Use Keywords Properly

It’s also important that you place the KWs in the post, because that’s sort of the point. Websites that rely on images or video content can still place short descriptions, but ultimately, it would be better to use Meta Tags and accurate creation of each inner description text. A website that does this particularly well is www.crossbowcritic.com.

  1. Make Quality Content

Content drive views and no matter how well planned your KWs are and how well exposed your site is, unique posts will keep traffic coming. So make sure to research well and to put a lot of attention into your posts.

Four Best Tech Inventions for Baby Boomers

As we get older, pretty much everything we do gets a little more difficult. Fortunately this is a gradual process, so we don’t notice it in our everyday life.

The other fortunate aspect of modern times is that we are getting older, plus we’re getting older in better health. In other words, 50 becomes the new 40, 60 becomes the new 50 etc.

I feel there is a strong need to include more technology in the lives of older people. As far as I’m concerned, technology is the answer to increasing (or maintaining) the quality of life for older people.

In this article I want to list 4 new, modern technology developments that will make life of older people even more comfortable.

Adaptive Cruise Control & Automatic Parking

Most of us are not very happy when we see older people behind the wheel. But if you pay close attention, the only thing that is really happening is that they are simply a bit slower than we are. They are not per se bad drivers.

But when people do get older, and they are still driving a car on the freeway, “Adaptive Cruise Control” could be a great help. Older people tend to react a bit slower than younger people, and for that reason adaptive cruise control could be very helpful.

But the absolute best technological development when it comes to cars is “Automatic Parking“. Typically if you’re driving a big family car, this can be very beneficial. It’s fast, easy and safe.

The Robot Hoover

At first I thought this was a gimmick. Who needs a robotic hoover that does your vacuum cleaning? But then I realized that if you’re older, hoovering can become a tiring job. So for older people it makes very good sense to have one of those nifty devices.

The only thing you need to do is clean them a bit after two or three runs (depending on the amount of dust collected).

The ePill

The what? The ePill. This “invention” is a combination of a watch, a tamagotchi, and a pillbox. Let me explain.

Older people need medicines, and some older people need to take those medicines at given times and yet others forget to take them once in a while.

A tamagotchi is or was an early Japanese version of the robotic pet. You had to pet it and feed it by pressing buttons and stuff, otherwise it would die.

Combine the two, and you get an ingenious “tool“. The way it works is simple. Whenever a person needs to be reminded to take his or her medicine, the ePill will give a notification. But if the person ignores the notification, the ePill will “die“. In other words, every time you take a pill out of the ePill you give it a bit of life.

The ADT Quiet Care System

With the Internet all around us, it makes sense that older people benefit from this as well. But in an indirect way with this ADT quiet care system.

The way it works is simple. In the home of the elderly person, a couple of sensors are put up. Say one in the living room, bathroom, and main bedroom. These sensors register movement and activity, which they log and send over a secure connection, via the Internet, to other family members. These family members will not see the person, but will only see that there is movement in the house, and can take action when something is wrong (e.g. when there is no movement).

Don’t Assume Your Job Is Safe For Life

The job market is still very volatile and you never know what could happen from one day to the next. This is why now is the time you should start to really think about which careers interest you should the worst come to the worst and a new plan of action is called for. With the rapid changes in today’s economy and technology, you can’t expect that your job will be secure for life.

Your attitude in any job is very important- the way you treat your colleagues, how you deal with difficult situations and whether or not you are doing your job with compassion or care. Even your daily mood can have a profound influence on the people you work with.

Remember you should not make any excuses when things do not go according to plan but instead be honest and take responsibility for your own actions and decisions. Although you may not be able to control the situation, you are in control in how you choose to respond to it. Make the right choices.

Lifelong learning is important and you should continue to upgrade yourself by attending specific training for the parts you are not confident about. For example, you may want to sharpen your computer tech skills as this is a skill that is becoming more and more in demand. You can actually improve some of your skills without necessarily having to pay a hefty school fees. For example, you can volunteer to repair people’s damaged computers for free in a charitable organization with experts who are willing to train new people for the voluntary job.

How you express yourself and let others know that what you are doing and thinking is positive for the company is critical for your job security, no matter which company you work for. Another important task for your career contingency plan is to ensure you update your resume regularly. Even if you do everything right, you cannot predict what the future holds, so by doing this you will be able to respond quickly if some redundancies were to happen.

If it did come down to getting a new job or career, never give the impression that the reason you are choosing to work for a certain company is due to its geographic location or salary. And when it comes to location and salary, be wary that for some careers such as chiropractic, salaries can vary considerably from state to state.

Familiarize yourself with the competition and not only will be more likely to appreciate your current job but be inspired to take steps to upgrade yourself. This will definitely help you stay one step ahead. In the case of changing your career path, take a look at your training options. In our aforementioned example, you may find that learning how to become a chiropractor may take considerable time and money and yet still be the best investment you ever make.

Do not sabotage your career by using the company equipment to create resumes or surf around job hunting during work hours as this is undoubtedly violating your company’s policies and you are taking an unnecessary risk that may prematurely hasten your exit.

Modern Internet Technology Is Making Installment Loan Applications a Breeze

The Internet has revolutionised the way many companies do business. The advance of modern internet technology has provided solutions to many problems experienced by business, and has allowed them to dramatically increase profitability.

One of the biggest drains on corporate profitability is wages. As wages increase in most first world countries corporations are trying harder and harder to find ways to reduce staff to cut their wages bill.

This is one of the driving forces that is resulting in so many corporations that previously had manufacturing facilities in first world countries moving those facilities to third world countries. There is now an explosion in western corporations with manufacturing facilities in countries such as Sri Lanka, India, China, Malaysia, the Philippines and more.

It’s all about reducing wages. Because workers in these countries are paid at much lower rates than workers in first world countries are a corporation can increase profitability by moving manufacturing operations to these low wage countries.

However modern technology, by way of the Internet, has also offered many corporations another way to reduce their wages bill.

Internet banking is one such example

Banks employ tens of thousands of people. And whilst some banks are able to take advantage of low wage countries to reduce their wages bill, for example by moving telephone services there, in many cases they are not. That’s because many of their staff are employed in branches, and of course the location of bank branches are fixed, so local staff are required.

For this reason banks are looking for any way they can find to reduce staffing costs. And one such way is to heavily promote online banking.

The banks love internet banking. The value of online banking is that it helps reduce the number of staff required in a branch as customers are able to do their banking in a low-cost environment, namely online. Prior to the arrival of the Internet all customers did their banking in a high cost environment, namely the branch.

And it’s not just banks utilising the Internet

Many different types of financial institutions are now turning to the Internet to make customer interactions fast, secure and above all, cheap. It costs very little to build a website, and if a financial institution is able to direct customer interaction to a website rather than to conduct that interaction through a staff member, the savings are enormous.

And as the technology behind interactive websites improves over time financial institutions are able to make greater and greater use of a website to increase their ability to reduce staff.

A recent example we have observed is companies offering small dollar loans.

These are companies such as payday loan companies, installment loan companies and others. They offer loans of small amounts of money to customers requiring it over relatively short periods of time.

And these companies are now flocking to the Internet to offer their services online, as that is the cheapest way to do it.

We’ve been interested to see one company offering installment loans for bad credit online with a turnaround time of less than an hour. (Not that we are promoting installment loans for bad credit, if you’re thinking of taking one out then read this first http://www.installmentloansguide.com/installment-loans-for-bad-credit/, and if you’re worried about your credit score find out how to improve it here)

The technology is now good enough that customers can make an online application and the application can be assessed and returned in less than an hour, in some cases only a few minutes. This would have been unavailable to financial institutions not so long ago.

Big companies are in a never-ending quest to reduce their wages bill, and modern technology, by way of the Internet, is giving them the ideal opportunity to do so. And this results in increased profits which has to be great for business.

Fifty Is The New Forty

Life begins at 50, that’s what we say. The “magic” number used to be 40 but we have decided that 50 is the true magic number. By then your kids – if you have any – are normally fully independent, living away from home and making their own way in life with their own careers and aspirations. It is at this stage that we often find ourselves wondering what to do next. Some people take up a new hobby and some people suddenly find they have the time to pursue the hobby they already had, but which they never had enough time for before.

Some people choose not to wind down, but instead to change their life in a more dramatic way and go back to studying – look at Pat who wanted to become a RN. She proved it is never too late to follow your dreams. A career in nursing is one that many people enter into in later life as there is no upper age limit to training. Women especially who may have put their careers on hold to keep house and raise a family now find they have the chance to realise their previous ambitions. Modern technology such as the internet makes it so much easier to do this, to find out information that would normally be inaccessible.

So you see, good people, it is never too late for men or for women to gain a new lease of life. The key is to keep your body and mind fit and healthy. Keep active and follow a healthy diet. If you have always eaten well then just carry on what you are doing but bear in mind it is especially important as our bodies age to up our intake of calcium – consume plenty of calcium rich foods such as dairy products, green leafy vegetables such as cabbage and broccoli and some canned fish products.

Keep your mind stimulated – use technology such as handheld game consoles to keep your brain active – look at brain training games that you can run on consoles such as the Nintendo DS. Some of them have large clear screens so they are easy to read. You can also get applications that run on them to help you eat a balanced diet. Keep reading, or if you have never read much before, then start to read – a great way to do this is to treat yourself to a Kindle or other e-book reader so you can read on the go. Keep feeding your mind, it is good for the soul.

So you see, later life really can be the time to actually start living – as funny as that may seem to the younger generation who all think we are past it. I still remember when I was a kid of around twelve years of age.

I can recall looking at my mother who was around forty years old at the time, and thinking that I would never be that old. And all of a sudden, all these years later, I find myself older than that and wondering just where the time went. It is true when we say “time flies”. It may sound like a cliché but you know what, they are clichés for a reason – more often than not they are the truth.

With the technology we have at our fingertips now, us oldies have no excuse not to lead a fulfilling and exciting later life.

Technology, Not just for Young People Anymore

In today’s world, technology is changing and being upgraded like the wind changes direction. Each time you acquire the “newest” or “best” available on the market, V 2.0 is on the horizon already. Sometimes it happens within a couple of weeks. It is easy to think that this is just a young person’s game. That older people are too out of touch and don’t care to keep up with the times. That assumption would be completely inaccurate! Many people over 50 are regular travelers on the Information Super Highway, and it looks like that number is only going to grow.

This is a crucial skill for people of any age. It can be especially important for older people as it becomes increasingly difficult to get out of the house to complete daily tasks. Going to the bank to pay a bill is a thing of the past if you know how to set up your banking online!

There a few more important reasons technology could have a great impact on your life that I will outline here:

Connection

As you get older, you end up spending more time alone, or in the company of other seniors. While there is nothing wrong with either of the two, it is nice to stay connected with the younger members of your family. Skills like writing and checking email, online chat or hangouts, and social media such as Facebook or Twitter will help you to stay in contact with relative ease. This could potentially help you develop a relationship with your grandchildren that would not otherwise be possible.

Gaining Knowledge

The Internet is a gateway to learning anything at all that you may not have previously had the time for. This could be something you have been interested for many years, but just couldn’t find the time. The Internet puts that right at your fingertips! You could learn how to arrange flowers or even build a family tree!

Work

Retiring isn’t easy for a number of reasons. You may not have enough money, which is becoming a more and more common problem. Even if you manage to save up enough to live the rest of your years comfortably, you will have many “extra” hours in a day to fill up. The Internet provides a world of opportunities that didn’t exist even 10 years ago. You could learn to be an affiliate marketer, work for a call center, or work for a service as an article writer. You could even make some extra money medical coding from home.

TeleHealth

It is possible to have health care services delivered via the Internet today. It can be as simple as an email between the doctor and patient and even gets as complex as them being able to monitor you from their office while you are at home. There are pillboxes that remind you to take your medicine, smart beds that can monitor vital signs and robotic walkers that can come when they are called. And the possibilities just grow each day!

The possibilities do not end with what have discussed here either. Today’s inventions can make it possible to continue to enjoy things you have done your whole life, which you couldn’t do otherwise. For example, people who like to hunt can’t spend an entire day in the woods following animals around, as they get older. Today’s trail cameras can send pictures straight to your computer, eliminating the need to spend weeks out in the field tracking.

The options technology provides to help older people stay in touch as they get older are endless and continually grow in number with the advent of each new invention. Just a few basic skills and you will be ready to take the leap into the world of IT, and your life will be better for it!

The Top 6 Websites For Finding Out Health And Illness Information

health websitesWe often rely on the Internet for a variety of information. We have become accustomed to search Google first if we are confused about something or to gather needed information.

The web becomes our primary resource in just about almost anything.

However, we have to be careful about the websites we choose because not all of them are reliable sources of information, especially about health matters. Here are top 6 health sites based on their number of visitors.

1.      WebMD: This site is the best source of vital information about a wide range of health conditions. It offers useful tips for living healthy in all aspects of our lives. It also features self-assessment measures to see if you manifest symptoms of a particular health condition, and more importantly, solutions to these.

2.      NIH: The National Institutes of Health is your single source of health information. It tells the latest health related news, health education, new discoveries and programs that develop science and health. This is the site of the US’ Department of Health and Human Services.

3.      Yahoo! Health: Yahoo! Health tells us useful information about a variety of health conditions. It also tells the latest news stories that are health-related. It features 3D body maps, and health videos. What is interesting is that you can search what your condition is by simply inputting your symptoms in the provided space. You can also search for treatment; find a doctor and the right medication.

4.      Mayo Clinic: Mayo Clinic is also a popular site when it comes to health matters. It tells about diseases from A to Z considering your symptoms. It also tells the right medication and supplements, tests and procedures, It differs from the others because it can make doctor appointments and provide resources for medical practitioners.

5.      MedicineNet.com: This one is similar to WebMD, it is your complete source of information for various diseases including symptoms and medications. It also tells the latest news about new diseases. The popular features here are the slideshows that most viewers are pleased to checkout.

6.      Drugs.com: Drugs.com focuses on medicines from A to Z. It even tries to identify a pill. It has news alerts, tools and top drug descriptions. The good thing about this site is that it provides reliable news regarding medicines, which provide useful and updated information to people if they are trying to find out if what they are about to take is safe.