For many local businesses, a shop front, office or other business premises is the main sales floor. These days though, an online presence is essential. To allow people to find you online, you will need to do some work on search engine optimisation (SEO). Continue reading
There has been concern over the safety of racking systems in Australia, after WorkSafe Western Australia carried out a far-reaching inspection programme across the region’s wholesale industry. Concerns were raised that the industry was failing to use adequately safe racking systems.
A Full Scale Inspection
The series of inspections took place across regional and urban areas alike, with officials going to 127 wholesale premises to assess the range of hazards that workers face in their daily jobs.
Joe Attard, the Director or WorkSafe, said that wholesaling by its nature include a range of activities that could be dangerous and result in injuries to staff. As a result of the visits, the inspectors issued over 200 notes of improvement, and two more serious prohibition notices. This majority of these notices were issued specifically for unsafe pallet racking practices.
Common Injuries in Wholesaling
The most common form of injury with wholesaling comes from muscular strain and injury from carrying, lifting or putting heavy objects down. This can be partly mitigated with the use of automated machinery, but the nature of the job means that most workers will need to engage in manual lifting and shifting for at least a portion of their day.
Quality and compliant pallet racking in Ireland, such as those provided by groups like www.rackzone.ie are suitable for businesses wanting to ensure that their premises are kept safe, to protect both staff and customers alike. Without these, there are three key areas of concern:
Firstly, many racking systems do not display safe working loads, which make them subject to overloading and the risk of toppling or falling. Secondly, racks are not always bolted down or secure, making them unstable and in danger of being topped by forklifts.
Last but not least, poor quality or poorly maintained pallet racks tend to be missing their safety lock pins, which are an essential safeguard to ensure that supports are maintained in place.
Other notices were also issued in relation to warning signs, hazardous substances and machinery guards. WorkSafe reminded wholesale business owners that they had a responsibility to their staff and customers, to maintain safe working conditions and to protect people on site.
As well as better pallet racking systems, training was recommended to help workers to lift correctly at all times and to identify potential health and safety risks within their work environment.
Windows is one of the most commonly used operating systems, so the release of a new version is always a major event. When it launched Windows 10 back last year on the 29th July it was set to be bigger than most because of the way it was delivered.
Existing users of newer versions of Windows (7, 8 or 8.2) had noticed that a new icon had appeared in the taskbar at the bottom of the screen. When the mouse cursor is hovered over it, the text ‘get Windows 10’ was shown.
Microsoft wanted to get as many people as possible to upgrade to the latest version. So for the first time, the company had offered a major Windows release as a free upgrade. For the first year of its life, Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 users could get Windows 10 for nothing.
Can I still Upgrade to Windows 10?
Windows 10 doesn’t seem too different at first from the previous version, but there were some big changes. The most evident is that the Start menu made a comeback. A lot of users missed this feature when it was dropped from Windows 8. The new Start menu is a mixture of the menu seen in earlier systems such as Windows 7 and XP and Windows 8’s tiled Start screen look. There are improved search capabilities, and users are able to resize and customise the menu to their needs.
Windows 10 has a new internet browser called Microsoft Edge. This is built to make reading and researching online simpler. So for web designers in Taunton like somersetwebservices it made creating an easy to navigate mobile responsive site all the more important, especially with the latest rank brain algo that came out a few months ago.
The Cortana voice-controlled personal assistant, already familiar to Windows Phone users, will be in Windows 10 too. Apps will be included for things such as photos, music and maps. Some features of older versions will disappear, though – Windows Media Center, for example.
Windows 10 is compatible with touchscreen and tablet devices as well as conventional PCs, so it will suit a wide range of systems. There are links to Xbox and it allows for the streaming of games from Xbox One to PC.
Getting Windows 10
Of course, software testing services will have had early versions of Windows 10 for some time. For the rest of us, users of Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 with the latest updates may already have seen the Windows 10 icon.
Once you’ve updated, it will be download in the background. You’ll be notified when this is done so you can install it at your leisure. If you’re thinking of buying a new computer, there’s no need to hold on all new Windows systems bought will be eligible for the free upgrade.
Whether you are operating a large online retail company or a small eBay shop, prompt delivery will be an important issue for you. Here are the top ten delivery companies operating globally today.
10. Japan Post Service
The Japan Post Service is part of Japan Post Holdings, a state owned company that was ranked number 6 in the Fortune Global 500 in 2010 when it generated more than $200 billion. Whilst Japan Post was entirely state run in the past, it has plans to become fully private in the near future.
9. Royal Mail
Founded as long ago as 1516, Royal Mail is a state owned postal service which was in trouble during the 1990s and at the beginning of this century. It has bounced back during the last five years, however and made its first full year profit in 2009 for more than two decades.
8. Parcelforce Worldwide
Parcelforce is the UK’s largest private shipping service, delivering over a million parcels everyday throughout Europe. Its direct competitors are DHL, UPS and Fedex. Its headquarters in Milton Keynes is one of the largest buildings in the UK, stretching over 43 acres. From bottles of vape juices that way less than a tennis ball all the way up to unique commercial furniture designed and built by businesses like http://simonkohnfurniture.co.uk/our-work/commercial/reception-areas-and-desks/. Parcelforce are a strong contender in the top 10 delivery companies.
7. YRC Worldwide
YRC is one of the US’s largest transportation service providers. YRC ships heavyweight shipments, usually industrial, retail or commercial goods. Based in Kansas, Texas, the company nearly went bankrupt in 2009 but has since recovered and employs over 50,000 people.
6. TNT NV
Dutch company, TNTNV, is one of Europe’s biggest shipping company, operating in 8 European countries, including Germany, Belgium, Italy as well as the UK. It sold its logistics division in 2006 and now concentrates on express delivery and mail services.
5. Schenker AG
With over 91,000 employees and 2,400 offices, Schenker AG is the second largest delivery company in Europe. Based in Berlin in Germany, it used to be the biggest transporter of goods by land in Europe and the world’s second largest air transporter.
4. United States Postal Service
The USPS only delivers within the US but is still the fourth largest delivery company in the world, with a workforce of almost 600,000 people. Not surprisingly, it is the US’s second largest employer of civilians, (second only to Wal-Mart) and has the biggest fleet of non-military vehicles in the world.
3. FedEx Corporation
Owner of the second largest fleet of aircraft in the world today, Fedex in one of the top three delivery companies globally.
2. DHL Express
Based in Bonn in Germany, DHL is the second largest shipping company worldwide. Now employing more than 500,000 employees, DHL was first created in 1969 to carry goods from San Francisco to Honolulu.
1. United Parcel Service, Inc
UPS delivers in excess of fifteen million packages and parcels every day to more than six million customers in over 220 countries around the world. Its large fleet of iconic brown trucks are a regular sight in almost every town and city. No wonder UPS is the number one delivery company in the world today.
You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting the best delivery company!
In today’s online environment, the competition for web traffic is fierce. While most webmasters compete for organic traffic within their relevant markets using genuine SEO strategies, others (known as spammers) try to outsmart the search engines by manipulating the systems they put in place. Continue reading
The retail sector has faced challenges over the last year, as the consumer market changes and new legislation came into effect. This has caused them to look at different refrigeration options that can enable them to meet the needs of consumers and comply with energy regulations. In order to meet these requirements, refrigeration suppliers and manufacturers have needed to consider the current marketplace and adapt their offerings to provide customers with the exact products they require.
Growth in convenience
More consumers are choosing to top up their groceries during the week at convenience outlets. Rather than simply relying on the one weekly shop, they’ll also pop into smaller stores on their way home from work or if they’ve forgotten something. The value of this sector is set to rise to £46.2 billion by 2018 from £35.6 billion in 2013. This will force more retailers to consider their options in this market and provide the solutions that their customers want.
This area of the retail sector is increasing, but this growth has resulted in further challenges. The stores have smaller footprints than traditional supermarkets and are often in difficult locations that are compromised on size, shape or positioning. As they are catering for the convenience shopper, they need to offer a wide variety of products. These generally focus on ready made meals, snacks and essentials. However, this means that stores have to fit a range of commercial refrigeration units into the compact space. This will allow them to hold as much stock choice as possible.
Making the industry more energy efficient
Another key issue for retailers is the requirement to reduce their energy usage. The Ecodesign Directive has set up a framework of compulsory requirements for all products that use energy across the European Union. Establishing themselves as an energy efficient business will not only allow these outlets to lower their overheads, but it will also highlight their eco and sustainability credentials.
These new requirements will force businesses to look closer at the energy rating of products, such as the commercial refrigeration ranges from Fridge Freezer Direct and other online retailers. Currently, up to 50% of the energy that is used by the retail industry goes on refrigeration appliances.
In order to assist retailers in this goal, suppliers will need to provide products that use less energy, as well as consider the use of heat recovery options. Heat recovery is where the heat emitted by refrigeration units is reclaimed. This can then be integrated with other services to provide heat across the building.
All these requirements for change come at a time when retailers are operating on tighter and tighter margins. They need to hold the correct amount of stock to meet the demands of consumers, but they also have to take into account the issues of wastage, which reduce profits and damage their environmental standings. Suppliers can help with these challenges by providing high technology products that maintain the freshness of products for longer.
Google recently announced that it had published a refresh for the Panda algorithm. This marks version 4.2 of Panda, and the search engine expects that the rollout will take months to take full effect, although many websites are already seeing a shift in their rankings. Continue reading
The FDA has tentatively approved a new drug for muscular dystrophy, despite an apparent lack of evidence that it works. Pressure from family and industry lobbyists helped the FDA come to this landmark decision, which has been seen as a victory for the families of sufferers.
Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy
Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy is a rare muscle-wasting disease that affects boys. One in 3600 boys across the world will develop Duchennes, the most common form of Muscular Dystrophy. It causes weakness, a loss of movement and eventually an early death, with sufferers rarely getting past the age of 25. An actual cure has never been found. Until now all medication for muscular dystrophy has been in the form of steroids, which help muscles grow, in an attempt to slow the disease.
The drug, Sarepta Therapeutics’ Exondys 5, has only been tested on 12 boys, and its effects are more ‘expected’ rather than proven. Exondys 5 acts on an important protein known as dystrophin. Dystrophin plays a key role in the growth of muscle fibres.
This is a rare approval from the FDA, which normally require more rigorous testing. However, the internal dispute became so heated that the Chief Advisor had to be involved in the final decision. Desperation for a treatment has led families to lobby the FDA for approval. The FDA is the US Federal Food and Drug Association, and all new drugs and medicine need to be approved by them. Many find out the answer to the question of how long does it take to get a FDA 510K approved drug on the market the hard way, although going through a third-party review company such as http://www.fdathirdpartyreview.com/ can shave up to three months from the review and approval process.
The drug was approved under an accelerated approval system which allows drugs that haven’t been fully proven but so show promising early signs. If the drug fails to work, the FDA has said they may remove their approval. The drug company has promised to help families fund payment for the drug, which will cost around $300,000 dollars a year for one patient.
Hopefully, the early indicators of the drug prove right and this will lead to more hope for those with Muscular Dystrophy.
Businesses are always looking for new ways to generate sales online and the perpetual growth of the internet and the platforms that influence it allow for fresh approaches to be adopted regularly.
Paid search advertising and SEO are tried and tested tools of internet marketing, while social media has emerged as an important but ultimately distinct platform for consumer engagement in recent years.
But now the worlds of search and social media are being drawn closer together than ever before following the announcement that Twitter and Google have partnered to bring tweets to SERPs with unprecedented immediacy.
This means that rather than having to head to Twitter’s site or use its dedicated app to find out about what is trending, people will be able to see this content clawed up for them by Google’s search algorithms.
So is the closer connection being forged between search engines and social media sites a positive step for online marketing, or will it present new challenges for companies that want to generate traffic for their sites and convert window shoppers into paying customers?
Going for Growth
From Twitter’s point of view the deal is immensely valuable, since it grants its site greater exposure and should help to boost user numbers at a time when its own growth has reached something of a plateau.
Businesses which use Twitter to raise the profile of their brand, interact with customers and run paid campaigns will also be better placed to increase the visibility of tweets, especially if they are targeted towards topical events.
The integration allows users to search for hashtags that are trending using Google’s SERPs as a sounding board for the hot topics of the day. And so companies which piggyback on a popular story or trend will be able to attract engagement from outside of Twitter’s closed platform.
Since allowing embedded ads to appear on other sites and apps earlier this year, Twitter’s efforts to monetise its service have blossomed, as have the opportunities available to businesses that are keen to exploit the diversification of this social media giant.
The downside of the partnership between Twitter and Google is that yet another alternation to the way SERPs are displays on desktop and mobile devices may cause problems for those chasing organic SEO visibility or PPC prowess.
If you’re business is based in Bristol then why not ring a Bristol web design agency that also offers digital marketing advice, like that offered by http://www.aardvark-creative.com they will help webmasters to keep pace with the changing face of search, especially now that mobile optimisation is taking a front seat.
Businesses can take comfort from the fact that the search market is not static and changes made to the layout of SERPs today can be changed in an instant if they prove not to be effective, or if they overcomplicate the interface to the point that users are turned off by them. The fact that Google and Twitter are taking a mobile-first approach with this matching of search and social media shows they know which way the wind is blowing.
If you’re serious about the catering side of your business you may wish to review a selection of Catering suppliers such as https://www.247cateringsupplies.co.uk that have an array of products ideal for your start up.
As a catering business you will have to comply with food temperature control regulations, as explained on the UK Government’s website at food.gov.uk/business-industry/guidancenotes/hygguid/tempcontrolguidanceuk, and you’ve also got your business reputation to think about.
Will your customers return if you serve them half-thawed ice cream because the door of your domestic freezer is opened so often it simply cannot cope or they fall ill because of what they have eaten? You can find out more about how to store food safely from the NHS at nhs.uk/Livewell/homehygiene/Pages/how-to-store-food-safely.aspx.
Whether you need a commercial freezer will obviously depend on the nature of your business, but here are some factors to consider. First and foremost, they are specially-designed to cope with the demands of a business environment, even those that are extremely busy or operate in extreme temperatures.
Their extra power means they can cope with extremely hot cooking environments and regular opening and shutting of the door, and are better insulated and easier to clean, making them a serious consideration for any commercial kitchen or venue where catering or frozen product supply is a focus rather than a side-line. Even if the latter is true, they may still be worth a look.
The next decision, after opting for a commercial freezer, is what type should you choose? There are walk-in units, freestanding freezers and blast freezers. What you choose will depend on the requirements you have, your budget and the space available. You should also choose an appliance that needs as little maintenance as possible.
This is the choice for you if you want to store items on shelves, and there are many different sizes available to fit in with your kitchen.
Commercial chest freezers, such as those available at Fridge Freezer Direct, are the right choice if you want to stack and store large amounts of food. They are best when the products are of similar sizes rather than for a wide range of different shaped items, which can leave a lot of wasted space inside.
This is an option for larger businesses who may want an inner section to store meat and an outer compartment that can be used for products that do not need hard freezing, such as desserts.
Counter and under-counter freezers
This is the type of freezer you will need to consider if space is short or if you want certain items to be easily accessible. Counter freezers can offer the additional benefit of providing extra work space on top.
These appliances freeze items extremely quickly, and are often used before products are moved into another freezer to be stored.