OffAssist

A Note from Candy

November 2014
Volume 13, Issue #1

Happy November!

Wow. It’s hard to believe that we’re almost to the end of another year. I’m trying to not think too hard about year end and the insanity that is sure to ensue come January.

Instead, I’m taking time out to be thankful to my clients. When I started this business 12 years ago, I did it to have something to do part time while I was home with the kids. My husband and I didn’t want to live the rat race with two corporate jobs, daycare worries, and commuting.

Who knew that OffAssist would turn into what it has today?

My kids are now entering, or close to entering, their teen years and I’ve managed to build a pretty awesome business that my clients are committed to. So, thank you. To my clients, for always loving us and telling your friends about us. To my team, really the most amazing set of people that I know. And to my colleagues, for your knowledge, your laughter, your sharing and your fun.

Happy Thanksgiving!


 

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In this issue...

Article: How Often Should You Change Your Website

Bookkeeping Tip: Debits and Credits Made Easy

Tax Deadlines: November 17th, 2014 - January 15th, 2015

Spotlight on Black Friday

Tech Talk: Moving Files Phone to Phone via Bluetooth

Humor: Saving Daylight

How Often Should You Change Your Website Design

By Alex H D

After spending loads of money on a good website design and after a couple of years of seeing the same old page, webmasters usually get bored and look out for new options and a significant overhaul of the layout and design. Let's just say that they want an excuse to change the website design. It's happened to all of us who have been in the industry since a few years. This article explains when and why to allow your website to evolve into something better.

Don't change the core

While the webmaster and the website owner maybe thoroughly bored of their website, a visitor or user maybe most comfortable with the same design. Over a period of time, your users and visitors have mastered the interface of your website and have memorized every nook and cranny which is useful to them. They are most comfortable with navigating your existing site and have figured out exactly what is where. A sudden face lift may trigger panic and confusion, especially if you have not sensitized and trained up your users for the switch. Hence it is best to avoid changing the core layout and theme of your website, when it is not necessary and only make modifications to the existing layout.

Festivals

Changing parts of your site during festivals and special days can draw some much needed attention to it. Many website's change color based on the season, with the site sporting a yellow or bright colored theme during summer and a cool blue or white theme during the winter season. Small motifs and the festival mascots adorn the site's to signify the website's celebration of the festival. Many Europe or America based businesses deck up their site and offer huge discounts during Thanksgiving and Christmas. In India and South East Asia, many businesses offer promotional pricing during Diwali and the Hindu New Year. Businesses based in the Middle East put up decorations and fancy banners during Eid to connect with their local clients and prospects.

Events

When a company is hosting or organizing a trade show or large event for their industry, it’s overtly visible on their website. Changing your website to reflect the theme of your event or conference can help boost the brand image and positioning of the event and your website. Not only will related traffic flow through your website, but even event related sales are sure to get a boost when your website is also in sync with the event. If you have setup a stall at an event or trade show or exhibition, it will surely benefit you if your website also carries the event branding and your location at the event. Many webmasters renovate the home page or at least a major part of it and dedicate that space to provide details of the event.

Search Engine changes

Search Engine compliance is one of the main things for a webmaster or website owner to look out for. If your website does not adhere to the best practices or guidelines of Search Engines, it is best to revamp the website to ensure compliance. Search Engines compliance takes priority over design and layout. Businesses spend hundreds of dollars on getting their website optimized for Search Engines. Many businesses spend in thousands to correct mistakes which have led to their downfall in Search Engines. When Search Engine ranking is concerned, its best to ensure that your website complies with the requirements at all times.

New Technology

As programming languages evolve, every website made with old programming techniques should also be upgraded. What HTML standards were used in 2000 are mostly phased out and replaced with new and modern standards which modern devices and browsers understand. Outdated code can become a nuisance for users of modern devices and may also lead to lower rankings in Search Engines. The latest HTML5 and CSS3 standards incorporate features for efficient use of system resources while reducing duplication of coding. If your website is using ancient HTML code, it will not validate with the latest standards and will fail in many newer browsers. Its best to overhaul your entire site with the latest CSS scripting techniques as soon as possible.

Better usability

With the advent of tablet PCs and internet enabled smartphones, there is an urgent need for Responsive Design to enhance the site visitor's experience on those devices. Most websites do not have any special optimization for viewing on mobile devices. Not many webmasters even know that you need to optimize the site for smaller screens. Many who are aware of this try and take shortcuts by using software and scripts to "mobify" their website. All it takes is just some modification in CSS. However, if you are really interested in serving up quality content on phones and tablets, it is best to make a mobile website specifically designed for those devices and browsers.

Don't forget to make Backups of your website before you try out any design changes or allow others to make changes to your website.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/8801813

About the author: Get a website with an Unlimited Hosting plan at HostingXtreme. Reseller Hosting has never been so affordable and easy to setup. To know more visit our website.

Article Source:  EzineArticles.com

Bookkeeping Tip: Debits and Credits Made Easy

Creating journal entries can be a pain – especially when trying to remember when to use a debit and when to use a credit. The list below is very helpful to use when determining whether a debit/credit will increase or decrease the balance.

Asset accounts (bank accounts, receivables) have debit balances.
Debits increase Asset accounts.
Credits decrease Asset accounts.

Liability accounts (loans, payables, etc.) have credit balances.
Credits increase Liability Accounts.
Debits decrease Liability Accounts.

Equity accounts have credit balances.
Credits increase Equity Accounts.
Debits decrease Equity Accounts.

Income accounts have credit balances.
Credits increase Income Accounts.
Debits decrease Income Accounts.

Cost of Goods Sold accounts have debit balances.
Debits increase Cost of Goods Sold accounts.
Credits decrease Cost of Goods Sold accounts.

Expense accounts have debit balances.
Debits increase Expense accounts.
Credits decrease Expense accounts.

 

Tax Deadlines

11/17/2014
Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month

12/16/2014
Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
Corporations - 4th Quarter Estimate Due

12/31/2014
 Last Day to Open KEOGH account for 2014 deposits

1/15/2015
Individuals, Farmers & Fishermen Pay 4th Quarter Estimated Tax Payment
Estates & Trusts 4th Estimated Tax Payment
Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month

Spotlight: Black Friday

I’m a (semi-reformed) Black Friday shopper.  When the kids were little Tom and I would go over the ads and put together a list and take turns going out to get the big ticket holiday gifts.  Now that the kids are older and technology has changed the way we shop, I’m mostly a cyber shopper. Well, that and the kids have hit the “Just get me a gift card,” years.

If you like to hit the holiday sales and stand / walk / run off your turkey dinner on the day after Thanksgiving, here are a few great places to do some scouting ahead of time:

http://bfads.net/ - My personal favorite; I remember when this was a hidden gem of a URL, something you only told your good friends about. Now I’m telling you. We’re friends, right?

https://blackfriday.com/ - Looks mostly big box sponsored, but still, the big boxes are where the best deals will be on Novmber 28th.

For a reality check on whether it’s worth getting up early, check out this article in the Wall Street Journal.

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Have you nursed a secret longing to be in the spotlight, center-stage, all eyes on you?

If you would like to be featured in the OffAssist spotlight column, and have not been featured in the past twelve months, contact Dyanna@OffAssist.com and we’ll see if we can put you in the limelight!

 

Tech Talk: Moving Files Phone to Phone Via Bluetooth

Tom BeauchampBy Tom Beauchamp

Smartphones have taken the place of many devices in our lives. E-mail, music, pictures, and even video can be created and stored on our smartphone until moved to our computer or sent via our data plans. But it can be a bit of a hassle to move that picture, presentation, or song from one smartphone to another.

If both smartphones have Bluetooth technology (which most do) then here is an easy way to move files from one to the other:

1.)    Turn on Bluetooth on both phones. This is usually found under “Settings” or “Connections”.

2.)    In the Bluetooth settings, set both devices as “Discoverable” or “Visible to other devices”.

3.)    Pair the devices with each other.

4.)    Using your phones file explorer you can move files from one phone to the other.

On a side-note: some phone will not allow the moving of files via Bluetooth by default. You can get free apps from the Google Play store that will allow you to move files.  On Apple devices, you can use the Bluetooth File Exchange application.

Tom Beauchamp is the marketing and tech expert behind OffAssist. He can be reached at tom@offassist.com.

Humor: Saving Daylight

Finally, someone made a movie (or at least a movie trailer) that expresses the trauma we all experience twice a year.

 


 

Have an article you'd like to write for our monthly newsletter or want to be spotlighted? Have a QuickBooks question or something you'd like to see in the Tech Tip? Email candy@offassist.com.

The OffAssist newsletter is made possible by the copywriting/editing skills of Ink Think VA, and the coding talents of Next Level Digital Solutions.

 

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This newsletter is published monthly by Candy Beauchamp of OffAssist. © 2014

Much of the advice in this newsletter is based upon the research, professional and personal experiences of the authors. If the reader has any questions concerning any material or procedure mentioned, the publisher and authors strongly suggest seeking the advice of a qualified CPA or other professional.