Categories
Business Support Technology

Email Spam and Whitelist Management Processes for Outlook, Yahoo, Gmail & iCloud

Recent updates to email spam filtering has lead to a lot more of unreceived messages for users across the world. Have you recently dealt with this? Out of nowhere you just STOP receiving emails from someone that you have a conversation going with….only reconnect and start the conversation over again weeks later? Messages that you were accustomed to receiving from people, suddenly and unbeknownst to you, end up in the spam folder. This can be frustrating and confusing for both parties and its been a common occurrence lately. Spam and Whitelist Management should be a topic of understanding and normal procedure moving forward.

How do I check my Spam and Whitelist Management?

We have some helpful information below on how to adjust your spam filters and modify your whitelist settings for some of the most popular email clients.

Why are my emails going to Spam or Junk folders all of a sudden?

Email marketing has grown in recent years but not in a completely positive way. More and more scams and fraudulent activity are happening online. Your personal information is being harvested, sold and shared to those looking to bring you curated messages for engagement and advertising purposes. However, this information is also privy to those with nefarious online motives. This advancement has led to tighter restrictions being enforced by the big dogs like: Microsoft (Yahoo & Outlook), iCloud (Apple) and Gmail (Google). Spam and Whitelist Management needs to be something that you look into now.

How do I avoid emails being placed in your Spam or Junk folder?

These three items are the basic steps taken in all of the procedures below. 

1. Add your most commonly communicated email addresses as a “contact” on any of these services. Doing this first step will add these addresses to your Whitelist.

2. Adjust your spam filter settings. This is per email client but once done shouldn’t require any additional maintenance.

3. Regularly Monitor your spam folder. Emails that are placed in your spam or junk folder are typically only held for a few days before being automatically deleted. Checking your spam and junk folder, for each mail client, on a regular basis should be a part of your normal routine. When an email appears in your junk or spam folder that shouldn’t be there you can select that message and mark it as “not spam”. In most cases the email will be immediately removed and placed into the Inbox.


Microsoft OutlookOutlook Email Process

Outlook.com is now the hub for Hotmail, Live Mail and other Microsoft email products. 

Add people to your Safe Senders List via online web version of Outlook:

1. Select the Settings icon (gear icon)
2. Select View all Outlook settings
3. Select Mail
4. Select Junk Mail
5. Enter the sender email address
6. Select Add > Save

Mark an email as “not junk” in Outlook:

1. While in your Outlook folder list select the Junk Email folder and select the emails that shouldn’t be there
2. Right click the desired email and then select Mark as not junk.

Check blocked senders and safe senders list (check your whitelist and blacklist):

1. Select Settings > View all Outlook settings
2. Select Mail, and then select Junk email
3. If your see the senders address listed under the “Blocked senders and domains” select the address and then select Remove > Save

For more information on Outlook email Spam Filtering Settings please visit this Microsoft support pages: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/block-or-allow-junk-email-settings-48c9f6f7-2309-4f95-9a4d-de987e880e46

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/change-the-level-of-protection-in-the-junk-email-filter-e89c12d8-9d61-4320-8c57-d982c8d52f6b


GmailGmail Email Process

On a computer:

1. go to contacts.google.com
2. At the top left corner, select Create Contact
3. Fill out the contact information and be sure to include their sending email address
4. Select Save in the bottom right corner

On an Android mobile device:

1. Open the Contacts app
2. At the bottom right, touch Add
3. Enter the contact name and email address
4. Make sure you save the contact to the correct account. Next to your email account, tap the Down arrow and then select the account that will receive the email messages you’re whitelisting.
5. When you’re finished touch Save

Mark an email as Not Spam:

1. Open the Gmail website: https://mail.google.com
2. On the left select Spam
3. Find and open the desired message
4. At the top of the page select Not Spam

Gmail spam filter rule creation:

1. Open the Gmail website: https://mail.google.com
2. In the search box at the top select the down arrow
3. In the From field and enter the sender email address
4. At the bottom of the search window click the Create filter
5. Select Never send it to Spam
6. Click Create filter

For more information on Gmail Email Spam Filtering Settings please visit this Google support page:

https://support.google.com/a/answer/2368132?hl=en


Yahoo LogoYahoo Email Process

1. Log into your Yahoo mail account, select Contacts icon
2. Select Add a new contact
3. Fill out the contact information and be sure to include their sending email address

Mark email as not spam from mobile device:

1. Log into your Yahoo mail in your mobile devices web browser
2. Touch the Sidebar Menu icon
3. Touch the Spam folder
4. Find and select the desired email
5. Touch the Move icon
6. Touch Inbox

Mark email as not spam from computer:

1. Log into your Yahoo mail with your web browser
2. Select the Spam folder (select more if not visible)
3. Open the desired email
4. Select Not Spam at the top of the page

Unblock an email address in Yahoo:

1. Select the Settings icon
2. Select More Settings
3. Select Security and Privacy
4. Hover over email address and then select the Delete icon

For more information on Yahoo email Spam Filtering Settings please visit this Yahoo support page: https://help.yahoo.com/kb/fix-issues-yahoo-mail-filters-sln27270.html

or this wikiHow for a step by step guide: https://www.wikihow.com/Edit-and-Remove-Filters-on-Yahoo!-Mail


iCloudiCloud Email Process

1. Log into your account at icloud.com, select Contacts, select the Add (+) button in the sidebar and then select New Contact
2. Fill out the contact information and be sure to include their sending email address
3. Select Done

Mark email as not spam on iOS mobile device:

1. Open the Mail app
2. Open the message in the Junk folder
3. Touch the folder icon at the bottom
4. Touch the Inbox to move the message

* this procedure will work for all accounts (yahoo/gmail) that are using your Mail app

Mark email as not spam on Mac:

1. Open the Mail app
2. Find or select the desired message
3. Select the Not Junk button in the Mail toolbar or simply drag the message to the Inbox in the sidebar

For more information on iCloud Spam Filtering Settings please visit this Apple support page: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202315

 

In Conclusion

We hope that this small Spam and Whitelist management article helps to bring you resolve and understanding. If you are a business owner in need of email hosting, web hosting or eCommerce services please contact us!

Categories
Business Technology

E-commerce payment system options

One of the many steps to taking your business online is deciding how to accept payments.

Selecting an E-commerce payment system for your website can seem overwhelming to some with several questions and concerns instantly coming to mind. Where do I go? Who should I ask? Here is some helpful information that should help align your path.

Type of Website platform

Do you know what framework your website is running on? When approaching a payment processor this is one of the first questions they will ask. WordPress, Drupal, Wix, Shopify are just a few of the available website platforms. If you are using an all-in-one inclusive option like Wix or Shopify then you will be encouraged to use their easy one-click payment processing “setup wizard”. Which is great for some but will come at a cost. If you are using a framework like WordPress or Drupal then the setup is more manual. This shouldn’t come as a surprise as you have already taken the more calculated, timely and customizable approach. Ultimately you are only able to interface a payment system that can provide a secure portal or a software plugin for your websites platform.

If you are just getting going or testing the market with an idea; going the easy and quick route might be the best option. But if you are selling more substantial amounts through your website it would be wise to explore your payment processor options.

Type of Business or Industry

Some ecommerce businesses might have a more difficult time finding and securing a payment processor due to their line of business. CBD, supplement companies and many others suffer from constant regulations and display requirements to ensure continued service with their payment system. Having a great web team at your disposal, like Skynet Solutions, can help you with these requirements and keep you in compliance. Losing a way to accept money, as a business, can be a death blow. 

Types of E-commerce Payment systems and which one to choose

There are many companies offering payment processing systems that are actually resellers. Skynet Solutions is one of those, please reach our if you need help selecting a payment processor for your website. So which one do you choose? Well, depending on the above items (website platform and industry) that may have already been answered!

Integration
Its always best to integrate your payment system with your website via a software plugin API if the option is available. This provides more control options directly from your websites admin section for things like refunds or additional charges.

Rates
This is what it ultimately comes down to: What is the percentage or rate are they going to take off of the top of your profits? This is a major factor that is surprisingly overlooked! There are often times details in the specifics that can affect and change this rate depending on your volume or other circumstances. In the event you are confronted with an “easy setup wizard” will you tell them no? Or will you explore your options first?

E-Commerce payment system processors

Authorize.net – https://www.authorize.net

Square – https://squareup.com/us/en

Paypal – https://www.paypal.com

Stripe – https://stripe.com

 

Need more help?

Please give us a call or shoot us an email if you are in need of any ecommerce website support.

Categories
Business Development Support

Business Automation with Software

Business automation software is the future of consumer-business and business-business interactions. It streamlines all your company efforts into one, seamless process and designated channel of communication. We believe in efficiency and we have the means to achieve it.

Have you ever had a complaint or question from a customer and realized you would have to spend the rest of the afternoon digging through piles of paper files to find their bill and respond to their inquiry? Or have you ever accidentally not billed-or even worse, double-billed-a customer for a service because you didn’t have an effective system to keep track of billing and receipts? Or what about losing the resume of a great prospective job applicant because you have no system in place to keep track of incoming applications? As some point, most small business owners have had to deal with one of these problems or something similar to it.

The problem is, that not only are these things annoying, they’re also a waste of your time and money. We know that as a business owner, you work harder than just about anybody else around and you don’t have time or money to waste-especially when it comes to running your company. The good news is that all of these problems can be easily avoided with simple, automated systems. Everything from sales, human resources and IT to supply chain logistics, management and billing can be simplified with business automation.

Business automation software is the future of consumer-business and business-business interactions. It streamlines all your company efforts into one, seamless process and designated channel of communication. It creates accountability in the office because every action has a responsible owner. Every action is tied to the individual who started that process, so if you or a customer has questions about any service or order, you can trace it back to the source. Business automation software also keeps you from making human errors that can cost your business money. Things like unpaid bills that might go unnoticed in a busy office will never be forgotten by an automated system. By removing the potential for human error, you protect against things like wasted time, wasted money, forgotten accounts and missed steps.

All the little details of running a business can really slow down your process and overwhelm you. We believe in efficiency and we have the means to achieve it. Implementing business automation software reduces the cost of doing business by taking out the labor intensive activities like filing, sorting through stacks of paperwork, copying and faxing and other similar activities. This allows you and your employees to focus on what’s really important-your business! No matter your industry, from the restaurant business to auto body repair to technology development, parts of it can be made easier and more efficient if everyone spends less time looking for paperwork or using the fax machine and gets to spend that time on doing their job to the best of their abilities.

There really isn’t any part of an office process that can’t be automated and made more efficient. Everything from accounts payable to most human resources hiring practices. Looking to hire? We can help you easily streamline your onboarding process for both applicants and your human resources staff with business automation software. Implementing this makes it easier for everyone. Even the best HR employee may lose track of an application or two if you are inundated. And if you have multiple postings at once, it gets even more difficult to track. You don’t want to lose out on a great candidate because you didn’t have a system in place to track them!

We have experience designing and creating software that makes the entire process smooth and streamlined. And if our existing software doesn’t do everything your business requires of it, we can customize software for your unique needs.

Our business automation software allows you as the business owner to focus your time and efforts less on the busy-work and more on the fun stuff. You started your business because you’re passionate about your industry and you know you can do it better than anyone else is doing it. However, when you spend two-thirds of your day bogged down in paperwork, logistics and human resources issues, it’s easy to forget why you actually started your business in the first place. We want to help change that with our business automation software. And rest assured, if none of our existing software works for your business, then we will do what we do best and create custom automation tools specifically for your business.

What is Business Automation and its Purpose?

Business automation starts when a customer makes a request and ends when the customer receives their completed request and pays for the good or service. Every step of the way through is cataloged and organized so that every step of the process is documented and can be referred back to later if necessary. This way, if a customer has a question or a compliant or you or an employee are trying to remember what stage of completion a certain task is at, all you have to do is check the system. No more relying on a he-said, she-said or someone’s distant memory. And goodbye to all those business nightmare scenarios we outlined earlier.

In short, business automation software replaces manual triggers with software. So, instead of you walking over to your coworker’s desk and telling them, “hey, I completed this task, please take over the next step and then send it back to me when you’re done,” the system automatically creates and alert and moves the task from your to-do list to your coworker’s to-do list. You can have set this up in whatever way seems most logical and convenient for you and your employees to use. You can have the system send an email alert or another type of alert when you receive a new task. You can ensure that each task comes with a timestamp and a chain of custody so you can always trace it back and see who sent what task to who when and who completed what step when.

For every project you work on for a customer, no matter how large or small, you can create a task. That way there is always a record that you can reference to see how long it has been since you started a project and what stage of completion it is in. That way, if you or a customer ever has a question about something, all you have to do is check the task so see when and where a problem occurred. No more searching through your email trash folder or wondering where you put that Post-it you had taken notes on at the last client meeting. This creates an end to end process and eliminates the potential for human error and which increases efficiency.

Still not Convinced? Check Out These Statistics.

91% Percent of companies with more than 11 people use a CRM system, compared to 50 percent of companies with 10 or fewer employees

81% Percent of CRM users now accessing their software via mobile devices, leading to greatly increased productivity

79% Percent of top-performing companies using marketing automation for more than two years

  • Sales reps saw productivity increased by 15 percent when they had mobile access to CRM applications
  • Research has shown that 65 percent of sales reps who have mobile access to CRM meet their sales quotes, compared to only 22 percent of those who don’t have mobile access to company CRM
  • Companies considered best-in-class are 67 percent more likely to use a marketing automation platform of some kind
  • 75 percent of customers say they’ll spend more money with a company as a direct result of a past positive customer relationship experience
  • 70 percent of businesses already using CRM software intend to increase spending on it because they’re so happy with it
  • 78 percent of successful marketers say their marketing automation system is most responsible for bringing in more revenue
  • 61 percent of CRM users said security and privacy were not challenges when adopting or using their CRM system
    However, 56 percent said they faced challenges when trying to customize their CRM without professional help
  • 74 percent said their CRM offered improved access to customer data
Categories
Business Support Website

Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization (SEO) is fundamental and essential for any ecommerce or mobile website design. Properly created and executed SEO will help position your website properly on search results; allowing it to be found at the most critical times.

A professional website design service company like Skynet Solutions can build your website in a way that will please both your visitors/customers, as well as Google, Bing, and other search engines. More importantly understanding how SEO can help your web presence become more relevant and profitable is our job as website design professionals. Skipping the basics of SEO will only leave your site’s foundation a mess and prevent you from fully maximizing revenue opportunities.

During the Introduction to SEO session at SES New York, Carolyn Shelby (@CShel), Director of SEO, Chicago Tribune/435 Digital, fully explained the extreme value SEO can deliver to a site, and stressed the importance of basic SEO using the following analogy: “Skipping the basics and spending all your time and money on social and ‘fancy stuff’ is the same as skipping brushing your teeth and showering, by buying white strips and wearing expensive cologne.”

Although the Introduction to SEO session was intended for industry newcomers, Shelby’s tips offer important reminders for even experienced website design companies who have been optimizing websites for years.

What is SEO and its purpose?

We will start with the purpose of Search Engine Optimization and move into what it actually is next. So, what’s the purpose of having good SEO?

  • To create an informative and seamless user experience for your visitors.
  • To communicate to the search engines your intentions so they can recommend your website for relevant searches.

Think of your website like a cake. Who doesnt like a good analogy? Your links, paid search, and social media act like the icing, but your content, content management system, and infrastructure act as the sugar in the cake. Without these items your cake it would be tasteless, boring, not eaten and would grow stale. A professional website design company like Skynet Solutions can help explain and maintain your website so that it never gets stale.

What are search engines looking for:

Search engines want to do their job as best as possible by referring users to websites and content that is the most relevant to what the user is looking for. So how is relevancy determined?

  • Content. Is determined by the theme that is being given, the text on the page, and the titles and descriptions that are given.
  • Performance. How fast is your site and does it work properly?
  • Authority. Does your site have good enough content to link to or do other authoritative sites use your website as a reference or cite the information that’s available?
  • User Experience. How does the site look? Is it easy to navigate around? Does it look safe? Does it have a high bounce rate?

What search engines are NOT looking for:

Search engine spiders only have a certain amount of data storage, so if you’re performing shady tactics or trying to trick them, chances are you’re going to hurt your website’s performance in the long run. Getting a website design service company to develop specific tactics catered for your needs will help you hit the ground running straight!

  • Keyword Stuffing. Overuse of keywords on your pages.
  • Purchased Links. Buying links will get you nowhere when it comes to SEO, so be warned.
  • Poor User Experience. Make it easy for the user to get around on your website. Too many ads or a confusing navigation can make it too difficult for people to find content they’re looking for and will result in an increased bounce rate.
  • Images. Images are not indexable or readable by search engine bots. If the most important information about your service is listed in an image then you are omitting this information from being visible to the search engines.

Knowing, understanding, and reviewing your website bounce rate is an important element for any business. Discussing and reviewing our clients bounce rate is a regular tactic practiced by Skynet Solutions that has proven to increase overall performance. These are some of the items that are provided for our clients in our monthly reports. If your business is need any of the items mentioned above please contact us today!

 

Categories
Business Digital Marketing News

IRS Warns Coronavirus-Related Scams are Coming

Recently, the Internal Revenue Service reached out to small businesses to help urge taxpayers to be cautious of coronavirus-related scams that may soon come through their phone or email accounts. Responding to these phishing attempts will often lead to tax-related fraud and identity theft. Unfortunately, the most at-risk segments of the population for these scams are elderly individuals and those that are the most at need during this uncertain period.

Categories
Business

COVID-19 Policy Plan

As the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be a global threat, the top priority of Skynet Solutions is accounting for the safety and well-being of our employees, customers, partners and community members. Our organization is closely monitoring the situation and is diligently following all guidelines presented by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Skynet Solutions is committed to providing a safe workplace for our employees and we have taken steps to ensure our workers remain healthy and aware of the latest developments as they occur.