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Archive for the ‘reputation’ tag

April is Earth Month!   2 comments

Posted at Apr 5, 2013 @ 5:28pm green

environmental conservationWell, everyone, we are officially one week into April. A business week, anyway. But still, can you believe it? 2013 is flying for us at TurnKey Internet, and it shows no signs of slowing down any time soon, if at all.

Did you survive April Fool’s Day? Surprisingly, it didn’t get too out of hand here. I say “surprisingly”, since, although the TurnKey team may appear to be comprised of seriously awesome, talented, amazing, incredible, terrific, extraordinary, fabulous, additional adjective meaning “great” (because, why not?), super-charged IT heroes—that’s what we appear to be comprised of, right? RIGHT?! Right.—we’re all just a bunch of goofballs and jokesters at heart. Did anyone get you good (or bad) with an April Fool’s Day prank? Did you get anyone? If so, feel free to share… I need some ammunition for next year.

April Fool’s Day is fun, but we love April for dozens of reasons. Aside from a day devoted to being silly, there are, let’s see, blooming flowers… warmer weather—Hey! A girl from Upstate NY can hope, can’t she? My fingers are crossed, yours should be too, and I refuse to acknowledge the fact that it snowed twice this week.

Anyway, there is also Earth Day in the month of April. When you’re green IT fanatics like we are, April’s Earth Day morphs into a month-long celebration of sustainability and the environment. April, for TurnKey Internet and our community, has become Earth Month, if you will. And you will, because we’re devoting the entire month to showing you how cool it is to be green.

If you’re unfamiliar with the TurnKey Internet green initiative, we can’t imagine how, because we love to talk about it. Regardless—and since we love to talk about it—you can read our press release about it all right here.

Check in from time to time this month for green news, stories, announcements, and more, from here, there, and everywhere. We have lots to share!

Are you planning to celebrate Earth Day this month? How do you do your part for the environment? It’s so, incredibly important to take care of the planet. We LIVE here. All of us.

Happy Earth Month!

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Written by Emily on April 5th, 2013

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TurnKey Internet Receives SSAE 16 Type 2 Certification!   25 comments

Overheard at TurnKey Internet, straight from the CEO: “Attaining the SSAE 16 Type 2 certification was a significant goal and milestone for us. We pride ourselves on our unparalleled reliability, quality of service, and—most importantly—customer satisfaction. This certification not only proves that we are excelling in those areas, but also assures our new and existing clients that they are receiving the best possible service.”

You heard right, ladies and gentlemen! We are proud to add SSAE 16 Type 2 to the list of certifications that our green data center in Upstate NY has attained. “What’s that,” you ask? SSAE (or The Statements on Standards for Attestation Engagements) No. 16 (SSAE 16) Type 2 certification is an internationally recognized compliance certification, that was created by the Auditing Standards Board of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants in April of last year (2012). It replaced the Statement on Auditing Standards No. 70 (SAS 70) to better supplement international auditing standard ISAE 3402.

After a thorough examination, conducted by SOC audit specialists The Moore Group CPA, LLC., our facility was deemed compliant with the regulations required to attain SSAE 16 Type 2 certification. This audit investigates several core areas: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. It verifies that TurnKey Internet is of the utmost security, integrity, and reliability. It confirms that we have procedures and safety precautions of the utmost efficiency in place to ensure the security of our facility and our clients’ data within.

Needless to say, we’re pretty excited. We couldn’t wait to share the good news! You can read the full press release here >

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Watch Out! The Amazing Disappearing Web Host   1 comment

Posted at Aug 19, 2011 @ 5:20pm Web hosting

You may have seen this happen before. I know I have. A perfectly good web hosting company– reliable, good reviews, decent services– suddenly disappears in a puff of smoke, overnight! As all of us increasingly rely on web hosting services for our businesses, personal websites and data storage, it becomes ever more important to find providers that will be there tomorrow, and the next day, ad infinitum. Of course, few companies will admit when they’re having problems, and that makes finding a reliable host difficult. Fortunately there are several warning signs to look out for when deciding who to trust with your valuable data.

But It’s Here Today!

Sure, nothing lasts forever. That’s a fact of life. But when you purchase a service from a legitimate business, you expect it to last a good long time. You expect to be able to get your site up and running and move on to bigger and better things, like running your business. Unfortunately, over the past few years a disturbing trend has emerged. Many companies, good solid-seeming companies, have simply vanished, taking the hard work, blood, sweat and tears of their customers along with them.

Who Are They?

There are more disappearing web hosts than I can list here but one prime example is Yahoo’s Geocities, Geocities was around for years and there was no effort to protect customer data when Yahoo decided to abandon that particular pet project. Some customers managed to retrieve data via third-party services, but the majority of customers were just out of luck.

Where Did They Go?

In many cases, like Geocities, the parent company decides to pull the plug. When this happens, it is the parent company’s responsibility to inform their customers. If they don’t, well, there’s not much we can do about it. In the case of many other smaller web hosts, often the company owners simply can’t afford their overhead costs. They don’t own their infrastructure to begin with (they are resellers, “re-selling” the hosting resources of another, larger company) and they can no longer keep up with the bandwidth needs of their customers (regardless of the fact that they may have promised to do so.)

Warning Signs

There are many warning signs to look out for. If the host owns other online properties that aren’t doing so well, beware. Review the company’s profit numbers. If those numbers look bad, there’s a good chance they won’t be around much longer. If financial information isn’t available, look for news coverage of the company that might hint at a growing problem. Often, when a company is going under, things will start to fray at the edges. If customer service isn’t what it used to be– tickets aren’t answered, waiting times are longer, services are sluggish–it may be time to get out while you can still retrieve your data. If there is a sudden change in their terms-of-service, this may indicate an attempt to protect themselves from potential litigation. They surely know they’re going under long before anyone else does, and they will try to mitigate the damage to themselves in any way they can.

How To Avoid the Disappearing Web Host

There are a few common-sense ways to pick a solid web host that you can trust. Look for a host that has been in business for a number of years. Choose one that owns and operates its own infrastructure. Owning a datacenter is an expensive undertaking and only a company with significant resources can afford to buy the building (including heating, cooling, etc.) and the hardware. A company that owns that kind of an infrastructure is not going under overnight. You will have much more time to make other arrangements if things start to go south, and will likely see evidence of this happening long before you lose access to your data. Last, look for customer reviews. A company with a large amount of reviews has a large amount of customers. A good customer base is like a cushion for your and your data. It’s a community of people who are just as interested in seeing the web host thrive as you are, and they will all speak up if the service starts losing its luster.

Here is where I plug TurnKey Internet 🙂 We’ve got the infrastructure, the customer base and the many years of solid service under our belts. Why not give us a try next time you find yourself shopping for a reliable web host.

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Written by admin on August 19th, 2011

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Social Media: Setting the Tone with Your Customers   no comments

Posted at Aug 19, 2011 @ 1:15pm TurnKey Marketing

Social media is here to stay. It’s about as mainstream as mainstream gets and pretty much everyone has realized the import of the medium for businesses. As a marketing tool, it’s invaluable, though not without its pitfalls. I have written before about how to use social media to grow your business, market products and run specials. Today I am going to talk about how to use social media to build your business’ reputation with customers.

Interacting with customers in a public way is commonplace on the Internet, but on social networks it gets personal. Social networks, by their very nature, encourage participation, interaction and conversation. For individuals that makes keeping active friendships easier. It keeps families closer. It provides a forum for debating the issues of our day. From a business perspective, it presents a potential problem. In some cases, without the proper forethought, monitoring and attention, that problem can be devastating.

For a business, customer service is a cornerstone of growth. Without good customer service any business can fail, and fail fast. With social networks, customer interaction becomes virally public. In the old days, a customer might complain on a forum or on a blog, but today they complain in a Facebook feed… YOUR Facebook feed… and everyone sees it in real time. How you handle that complaint will define your customer service to existing and potential customers. This makes developing an internal customer service policy for social networks paramount. But how many companies are doing this? Is this critical element of social media business being ignored?

On a social network, a snide remark from a tired employee can influence thousands of potential customers. Incorrect information can snowball into a support nightmare in minutes. Every single interaction is being watched by your customer base, your bread and butter. If you’re not coaching your employees on how to handle social network interactions, you better start… fast.

One way to handle this is to restrict access to your social network account. Only give access to employees you trust, who understand the importance of decorum. It is also very helpful to develop a standard policy for social media interactions that focuses on openness, honesty and fairness. The good side of this kind of transparency is that customers can see when one of their own is being unreasonable just as easily as they can see everything else. If you handle interactions admirably, you will build trust, a kind of trust that no amount of traditional marketing can create.

So the social media of our times is one of the most useful and personal tools we’ve ever had for business. It crosses the divide between personal and commercial, paving the way for companies to build relationships like they used to in the mom and pop businesses of old. But with that incredible access comes great risk. Developing a strategy for social media interaction today will help protect your company tomorrow.

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Written by admin on August 19th, 2011

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TurnKey Internet is Not a Rip-Off – Best Value Hosting Provider   no comments

Posted at Jun 29, 2010 @ 10:32am TurnKey Marketing

It’s true. With an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, and a 5-star rating from customers, TurnKey Internet is the hosting provider with the best value and customer service.

Welcome to blog post #2 in the SEO-fu experiment. The truth is TurnKey Internet does have a good reputation. In fact, our reputation is excellent, thank you very much. We work extremely hard, day in and day out, to provide a top-notch service, great customer care and 100% uptime. But that doesn’t make us immune from the SEO powers that be when good customers turn bad. Like it or not, we are all at the mercy of Google. As I discussed in the last article, 2010 is the year for all of us to learn to use the Internet to our advantage—to protect ourselves and our businesses from unscrupulous bad eggs and, for that matter, unscrupulous rival businesses that don’t hesitate to seed negative reviews for their own evil benefit. Yes, I’m being dramatic, but no, I’m not kidding.

It’s an ugly practice, but many companies have taken to posting bad reviews of competitors to influence potential customers. The hope is that Google searches will return those seeded negative reviews, and customers will steer clear of the implicated companies (and steer towards the companies posting the reviews). If you don’t have a superstar PR team at your disposal, ready to re-seed with positive reviews (also an ugly practice) you’re sunk. So what do you do when cheaters game the system to make your business look bad? How do you fight back without stooping to their level?

SEO-fu. Rather than seeding reviews (which is totally cheating), you can improve your reputation by regularly updating your site content to reflect the truth about your business. It doesn’t matter how many nasty reviews your competitors throw to the winds if your well-written, informative content shows up first. Also, as I always recommend, solicit real reviews from real customers. The more real reviews you have, the better, even if those reviews include some negatives.

This isn’t about having a 100% A+ reputation, 100% of the time. A page of perfect reviews can work against you too. Think about it: if you visit a company’s website for the first time and every review you see is five stars, are you going to believe it? This is about a real life business. Every business makes mistakes, the salt is how you deal with them.

In order to protect your credibility, and to provide a quick reference-check for your potential customers, it’s a good idea to employ a third party to manage your company reviews. We use RatePoint:

TurnKey Internet Ratepoint Reviews Screenshot

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Written by admin on June 29th, 2010

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TurnKey Internet Review – Get the Unbiased Review Here, A+ Rated   no comments

Posted at Jun 28, 2010 @ 1:46pm TurnKey Marketing

TurnKey Internet has earned a 5-star rating from unbiased customer reviews and an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

This is an experiment. I hope you will follow our next few blog posts as I attempt to use my SEO-fu to elevate TurnKey Internet to the top of search results for otherwise undesirable (in some cases) search terms. It’s a pre-emptive SEO strike, and I, for one, am extremely curious to see how it works.

It is no surprise that everything we say and do online affects our reputation. This is as true for businesses as it is for individuals. But reputation depends as much on what you do, as on what others say, and others don’t always tell the truth. Everyone knows that positive customer reviews can go a long way, but what about when those reviews are negative? If negative reviews are an honest reflection of your customer service, you need to step up your customer service. But if negative reviews come from a bad egg—the customer with a chip on his shoulder, the gamer who abused your services and is upset he got caught, or the deadbeat who can’t believe you won’t turn over his data without payment—your company’s reputation could be unfairly and badly damaged. So what do you do? How do you protect that invaluable word-of-mouth reputation that keeps your business strong?

There are many companies out there that offer to monitor your online reputation, for a fee. But this is something I think you can do quite well on your own, for nothing. Yes, it takes some time, but keeping yourself apprised of what is being said about your company, from the perspective of your customers, is smart business. When a customer first hears about you—through word of mouth, via forums or an advertisement—she is likely to run a simple Google search for reviews. Getting into the head of that potential customer and running that search yourself will give you a good initial sense of what’s out there. If the first thing that comes up is a negative review from a forum post, you have some work to do.

My big secret is that this blog post is meta. While I describe to you how to protect your business’ online reputation, I am protecting mine. My hope is that, by seeding this blog post with SEO-friendly keywords that could otherwise bring up negative results from bad eggs, like TurnKey Internet Reviews, TurnKey Internet scam, TurnKey Internet fraud, etc., this blog post will be the first thing a potential customer finds when searching for those terms. By doing this, I take the sting out of the immature lashing-out of bad eggs, without stooping to the level of dirty search engine warfare. This is a clean search engine pre-emptive strike, and I highly recommend it for the long-term health of your business’ reputation.

Watch this space for more SEO-fu in the coming days.

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