Rules for Selling Online

Last Updated on Thursday, 28 August 2014 07:28 Written by Ed Beckmann Monday, 5 November 2012 10:46

Internet Sales

As we lead up to the festive season a lot of people will be buying and selling online.

If your business relies on internet sales, or (selling online) then you need to know about website compliance – distance selling regulations that will apply to you. There are loads of guides to do with website marketing and how to sell online, but it is well worth reading a good guide on how to comply with the rules and regulations that protect people who buy online.

Online Selling Rules

Items bought via your online shop will be subject to the Distance Selling Regulations, and there is a lot of information in the Distance Selling Hub run by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) in the UK. The five key principles below are taken from the OFT website and if you want to find out if you are doing the right thing, click our links and go straight to the web compliance tips on their website.

We will add more posts when they issue more guidance on internet sales or internet rules and laws.


Excerpt from the OFT site:


Five of the simplest ways to make your website more compliant with distance selling regulations are by doing the following:


Providing a full geographic address

Providing a proper email contact address
Flagging up hidden or unexpected charges early in the buying process

Being clear and open about cancellation rights

Providing a full refund plus refund of delivery charges when things go wrong

Click here for more information on how to make sure your website is clear and accurate


As you can see – straightforward, practical and useful reminders. Do please google+ or rccommend this page using the links below to share it with your contacts.

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Making the most of LinkedIn (part 1)

Last Updated on Thursday, 28 August 2014 07:28 Written by Ed Beckmann Wednesday, 28 March 2012 03:26

linked in logo

Linked in is a very popular site with loads of uses, but you can waste a lot of time and project a poor impression if you do not use it skilfully.

In 3 articles I will summarise what is on offer, how to make a plan and how to make sure that you get value for the time you spend on the site.

First steps

This first article will give you some familiarity with it and suggest a plan of action. My suggestion is that you print this out and explore the linked-in site. There is plenty of online help so I won’t waste space here giving click-by-click instructions.

  1. make a plan – although it is not complicated, a plan will get you more success for less effort overall. So read the steps, make some notes, look around the site a bit and then make your entries
  2. go into the settings and read through them. Initially turn notifications of changes off, otherwise people will be bombarded by every entry you make when you set up – this will make them insensitive to things that you post once you get going
  3. decide what you want your ‘headline’ to be. The headline is the text that appears immediately after your name.
  4. prepare a good photo that portrays the image you want
  5. enter your past job roles in reverse order, so the most relevant is first in the list
  6. company pages need bona fide email address @companyname and not @btconnect, @hotmail etc.
  7. bear in mind your ‘keyword’ information that you worked out for your company website
  8. enter the links to your website(s) and make sure that you amend the titles of web links, especially if you are listing several
  9. set profile display as public when you are ready
  10. think about who you want as connections
  11. import contacts but be selective who you invite, or systematically find and invite people
  12. always invite with a personal message – it shows you have thought about them
  13. hide your connections to avoid contact-snoopers. If you do not hide contacts, then sales and recruitment agencies effectively have a free view of your address book just by visiting your page
  14. put your contacts into groups to that you can post messages to easily. Avoid overloading people with ‘noise’ from your social media, they get so bored with bland updates from you that they miss the valuable items
  15. set up company page
  16. set up your products and services before getting recommendations
  17. when asking for a recommendation, indicate what you are proud of or want to stress. This will reinforce your message rather than simply be a list of nice comments
  18. use Q & A areas to be seen as being helpful and constructive
  19. make comments weekly but not daily, to demonstrate that your aim is to make a comment when it has value
  20. if you set up a group, do something useful with it
  21. look at a group to get to know the tone before posting to it
  22. really challenge yourself whether a posting you plan to make is of real worth to readers. If it is blatant self-promotion, you will be joining about 75% of the noise that is flying around and you are less likely to be respected

Summary

This has been a very general whirlwind tour of linked-in, and hopefully you can appreciate the difference between being noticed and being respected on it. In the following articles I will progress with company pages and your products and services, but will not be covering the use of Linked in for harvesting leads.

Useful resources

LinkedIn for Dummies (For Dummies (Computer/Tech))
LinkedIn: A complete guide for Individuals, Self Employed and Businesses
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Data protection – only keep what you can justify or get fined

Last Updated on Thursday, 28 August 2014 07:28 Written by Ed Beckmann Thursday, 26 January 2012 02:28

Facebook Data Hoarding Exposed

Facebook’s international headquarters in Dublin faced a 100,000 Euro fine following an audit by the Irish Data Protection Commissioner announced last month for keeping users’ deleted data in breach of Irish data protection laws.

The audit was triggered by an Austrian law student named Max Schrems, who requested a copy of all his personal data from Facebook while writing a paper on privacy laws. What he received was a CD containing 1,200 pages of information on everything from his ignored friend requests to deleted messages. After seeing the extent of information held about him, Schrems and 21 other students filed complaints against Facebook with the Irish Data Protection Commissioner, alleging the company is creating “shadow profiles” of its members, and even non-Facebook users, without their consent or knowledge.

According to the complaints, Facebook is illegally holding on to information about members and non-members, including phone numbers and e-mail addresses. Facebook’s international headquarters in Dublin supports all Facebook users in the UK and Europe, as well as in the Middle East and Africa.

Know your responsibilities by reading about the Data Protection Act, 1998 (Public General Acts – Elizabeth II)

From an article in ZEN Internet newsletter.

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