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5 Tips for Responsive Websites

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If you’re in the position to have a responsive website designed for your business, here are 5 things to consider that will make it worthwhile.

1. Minimize

A website that is displayed on a mobile device has a smaller screen and less real estate than a desktop monitor. Look over each of your pages and decide what information is absolutely necessary. Design your pages with minimal content to keep them from appearing too busy and messy.

2. Hide Content

Another useful technique for minimizing the amount of content on a single page is to hide it. You can do this by simply deleting content or by using dropdown buttons that expand text or images.

3. Scalable Images and Graphics

Visiting mobile websites with extra large or too tiny images can be frustrating. If possible, use a responsive image or graphic that can respond to the screen size. If you can’t, or don’t know how to make an image responsive, try using two different sized images for desktop and mobile.

4. Clickable Buttons

Take a few minutes to think about the layout of your website. Are the buttons displayed large enough on mobile? Is it hard to click on a link, image, or button with your thumbs? Give users plenty of space in-between clickable objects.

5. Fonts

Fonts go hand-in-hand with creating clickable buttons. Because of the smaller screen you should consider how your fonts would be displayed on mobile devices. Clear and easy to read fonts will be greatly appreciated by your site visitors.

Bonus Tip:

When users browse your website on mobile devices they have different features than when they browse on their desktop. The main one being that they can make calls directly from websites.

#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #Websites #WebDesign #ResponsiveWebsites #MobileWebsites

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What is Responsive Web Design?

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Responsive design is a technique used by web designers where the pages of a website “respond” and reconfigure to a mobile-friendly view on whatever device is being used. Not too long ago, designers had to create one website for desktop and a separate one for mobile. The mobile website was usually a watered-down version of the main site – but times have changed.

Even before Google announced mobile-first indexing, web designers were already transitioning to a single website that worked across all devices. They do this by using fluid and proportion-based grids that adjust their size by a percentage relative to the display size.

This type of web design has become the standard for how websites are built today. And this is because of the increase in smartphone and tablet users, which now make up over half of all website visitors.

One major issue that designers have to deal with when designing responsive websites is mouse vs. touch. A website displayed on a desktop is navigated using a mouse but mobile devices use our thumbs. Designers have to build a website that responds and adapts to the display size while still making the site easy to navigate.

According to a Pew study, 77% of Americans now own a smartphone, which is more than double the number of smartphone owners in 2011. If you track your website traffic, look at the devices that your website visitors are coming from. You’ll probably be surprised at the amount of mobile users. If you don’t have a responsive website you should consider building one to make the best use of it.

For more information about responsive web design watch our video below:

#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #WebDesign #Website #ResponsiveWebsites

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Press Release : PSPinc Listed on the Puget Sound Business Journal’s 2019 Corporate Philanthropy List

PSPinc listed alongside top Seattle companies; Alaska Air Group, Boeing, REI, and Starbucks.

Bellevue, Wash., May 23, 2019 –Pacific Software Publishing, Inc. (PSPInc) has been listed with 74 other companies on the PSBJ 2019 Corporate Philanthropy List. This is PSPinc’s second time that PSPinc has been named to this list, the first time was the 2014 Corporate Citizen list. PSBJ will separate the list into three categories for further awards at the Corporate Citizenship and Healthy Community Corporate Champion honorees event, at 11:30 am, May 23rd.

The PSBJ Corporate Philanthropy list recognizes the top 75 businesses that give back to their community. This year, the 75 companies have donated almost 170 million dollars. This will mark the 10th time that PSPinc has been named to a Puget Sound Business Journal list in the past nine years including Top Minority-Owned Company 2018, 2017, & 2016, and the 2014 Corporate Citizen list.

“Our contributions through our PSP Children’s Foundation would not be possible without the help of generous companies and close friends who support our vision of helping the entrepreneurs of the future in our community.”
- Mayumi Nakamura, CEO

PSPinc has been serving the Puget Sound community for over 30 years. As a small business, we understand how much work it takes to be successful With a focus on helping businesses succeed online, PSPinc and its sister company Dreamersi, provide all the digital tools needed to run businesses of all sizes and in all industries, from online websites to web hosting, email accounts, custom hosting, and e-commerce tools.

About PSPinc: PSPinc was founded in 1987 by Ken Uchikura, who at that time was developing software out of a room in his apartment on Mercer Island, WA. Three decades later, PSPinc has grown into a full-service software company offering web hosting, web design, and marketing solutions. Headquartered in Bellevue, WA, PSPinc houses 50 employees with two additional offices in California. More than 40,000 companies worldwide trust them for websites, email, and online services. To learn more about PSPinc, please visit PSP Children’s Foundation was formed in 2012 to provide programs and opportunities for children who are overcoming great challenges. PSPCF is partnering with UW to host a golf tournament to raise scholarships for 5 students. For more information on our children’s foundation you can follow us on Facebook.
#Engblog #PressRelease

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Overview and Video of IMAP

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What is IMAP?

IMAP stands for Internet Message Access Protocol. Try saying that 5 times fast…we’ll wait!

In layman's terms, it’s simply the method used to retrieve email from a mail server. * Emails are sent and received through mail servers. When you log into your email client, IMAP is being used to show your emails.

One great function of IMAP is the ability to check email on multiple devices because it synchronizes your emails with the mail server. With other mail protocols, like POP (Post Office Protocol), your emails are downloaded and then removed from the mail server.

We recommend using IMAP for your email clients instead of POP. Still don’t understand IMAP? Watch our YouTube video explaining it in more detail.

*Mail Server: a computer system that sends and receives mail.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #IMAP #Email #EmailServer #MailServer

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Overview of Content Management Systems (CMS)

Overview of Content Manageme...
What is a CMS?

A content management system, or CMS, is a software application designed to add, edit, and delete digital content – usually associated with a website.

For instance, our CMS is called WebdeXpress and it allows you to add pages to your website, edit text and image content, update your blog, add plugins, and manage your website settings.

The nice thing about content management systems is that they let you edit the content of your website separate from the design. WebdeXpress offers professional templates that make it easy to continually update and change content without messing around with the design.

Most CMS are great for SEO because they give you the ability to customize your page titles, URLs, image names, metadata and more, which help with your search engine ranking. Plugins are another feature that can help with design, content, or SEO by letting you expand the functionality of a CMS with third-party tools.

WebdeXpress and Wordpress are both considered a CMS but have very different levels of usability. WebdeXpress is very easy to use for people without web design or coding experience. Wordpress offers a lot of plugins and themes but can be very difficult to learn and is often hard to keep updated with each new security patch.

When looking at a CMS you should consider your website and management needs along with your skill level. If you have questions regarding WebdeXpress you can call us at 800-232-3989 or email
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #CMS #ContentManagementSystem #WebDesign #WebHosting #Websites

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Tips for Hosting an Effective Video Conference

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Whether your meeting is in person or online, it’s important to make the most of the time you have. If you really want to get things accomplished, here’s a list of things you should do before the meeting:

1) Define the goal.

Having the meeting is not your goal, producing results via the meeting is what you want to do. Make it clear up front to your meeting participants what the objectives and goals are for your meeting so everyone will come prepared. It also helps people stay on topic.

2) Set the agenda.

To help you stay on track during the meeting, prepare an agenda and distribute it to all the participants beforehand. This would list important talking points, goals, and perhaps who should lead certain topics of conversation.

3) Allow everyone to participate.

Meetings should give everyone the opportunity to express themselves. Allowing everyone to give their feedback and opinions is important. Give everyone a chance to have the floor, otherwise it’s a waste of their time.

4) Keep the meeting on schedule.

Someone should be accountable for keeping the meeting on track, on a timely schedule, and sticking to the agenda. Stay on course to meet those goals.

5) Define the answers and action steps.

Discussions are good but coming out of the meeting with answers and next steps is what’s it all about. Getting those results is your end goal and the sign of a successful meeting, not to mention a great use of your time.

6) Distribute meeting minutes.

Before the meeting starts, designate a person to take notes. By distributing those notes afterward, you are confirming everyone is on the same page and has agreed on the same things. It makes your next steps clear and effective, eliminating any misunderstandings ahead of time.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #Conference #Meetings #VideoConference #VirtualMeeting

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Make a Good Impression Over Video Conference

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A while back, we interviewed a candidate for a job via Skype since she was in another state. The Skype conference worked great, but we were reminded how important it is to consider your surroundings. Our interviewee was in her room with a pile of clothes on her bed, and we could even see into her disorganized closet space.

The point of video conferencing is to connect like you’re in person and view facial expressions, but the camera can pick up your environment so you have to consider what kind of impression that will make. Having a lot of clutter behind you might give the impression you’re a disorganized person. First impressions are everything, even virtual first impressions.

Before you host a virtual conference with a customer, a potential new hire, a potential new boss, or your own team, consider these questions:

1) Where are you going to have the video conference?

If you host it at home, make sure there’s no background noise from a radio or TV. If you have family members or roommates, let them know about the call. If it’s in your office, turn off your cell phone (or silence the phone), and no chit-chat around your office staff. Remember, it’s important the other people can hear your voice clearly and without interruption.

2) What kind of background is in your screen?

You don’t need to be in a conference room but it’s best to set up so your computer camera points to a blank wall if at all possible. The others will see beyond your face, potentially judging your character based on your surroundings. Most video conference systems do have a test mode so you can see if you are nicely positioned on your desk with a professional-looking background.

3) What are you wearing?

Even if you are out of the office while conferencing via computer screen, wear something that’s appropriate for the audience you’re virtually meeting with. Make a good, professional impression every time. Think of it like a job interview.

4) Is the room bright enough to show your face?

Have your video call in a light-filled space. If the other participants can’t see you because the room is too dark, it’s pointless to have a video call.

5) Do you have stable internet connection?

Having poor internet connection during a video call can be a big disruption. You’ll need high-speed internet and it’s wise to test a video call with someone you know in advance to be certain it works.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #WebConference #VideoConference #ConferenceCall #WebCam

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What is a Business Webinar?

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Now you are all set to conduct a virtual meeting – as long as your remote meeting participants also have the proper tools installed. Don’t forget your virtual meeting goes two (or more) ways so make sure everyone is capable of connecting.

What if your virtual meeting needs to be more like a seminar where many – potentially hundreds or more remote attendees – need to be present? Instead of calling it a virtual meeting, you may want to conduct a “Webinar,” which is a mashup of two words: Web and Seminar.

So what is a Webinar?

If you want to have a seminar where participants don’t need to be present at your location, or you want to host a hybrid of both live and virtual attendees, consider hosting a webinar – a virtual seminar.

A webinar is a great way to get more people involved. You can invite people to your live seminar, but for anyone who can’t come to your physical location, they can join virtually via the webinar and still get the training, class or demonstration you’re planning to present. Virtual attendees can still participate in Q&A, live chat, polls, surveys, quizzes and more. The host has a variety of options for how interactive they want the webinar to be.

Some webinar tools to consider that offer free trials (after which you must subscribe to the service), include: GoToWebinar, AnyMeeting, and Zoom. Check out these services and determine which one is right for you.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #Webinar #VideoConference #ConferenceCall

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Preparing for a Virtual Conference

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Skype, WebEx, Zoom … whatever program you decide to use for a virtual conference, you have to make sure your device is capable of using all the features. Conferencing from your phone using an app that plugs into the camera and speakers is fine if you’re on the move, but you won’t be able to share screens or files. If you’re conferencing in an office, here are some things you need to consider to make the most of the program you choose:

1) Audio

Obviously you need your speakers or headset to listen to others, and a microphone on your device. Most laptops have built-in speakers and microphones, but we’ve learned having multiple people in a conference room requires a better microphone system. We Skype in our conference room to connect to our remote staff for meetings. We invested in a good microphone that connects via USB to our laptop so when we speak, regardless of where we are in the room or at the table, others can hear us clearly. A little investment like this goes a long way. If you’re conferencing by yourself in a shared office space, make sure you have a headset to listen to the conference call. Be courteous to people around you.

2) Camera

Like your audio system, you probably have a built-in camera on your laptop or tablet. But if you are using a desktop, you may not have a built-in camera. A simple USB camera can easily connect to your PC and they are not expensive. If everyone else on the call is talking through a screen, and you want to be included in that, a USB camera is a simple, worthy investment.

3) Screen

Talking with people through a screen is only one part of the conference. In our office, we upload files and chat on the side to provide URLs and other information while we talk. So having the conference on my smart phone limits my ability to participate. I always try to have a couple screens open, one for screen conferencing, and the other to open and view files and links we share in our meeting.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #Webinar #VideoConference #ConferenceCall #Skype

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Virtual Meetings: Going Beyond the Conference Call

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Traveling out of town for business can be cumbersome and time-consuming, although sometimes necessary to meet with people face to face. Fortunately, technology advancements have given us many options to “virtually meet” clients, business partners or vendors face to face – and this month we’ll explore some of those ways to go beyond the conference call.

Today we want to share some free tools for video conferencing:

Skype, a Microsoft Service, is handy, especially when you want to video conference with multiple parties. You can have up to 25 connections free of charge but first you need to be connected to each other’s Skype IDs. There are a few differences between Skype paid and free versions, but clicking the plus “+” mark will let you add others to the conference as well as share your screens. You can also send files at the same time. These additional features are great for virtual conferences. Be aware, however, some companies may not allow for Skype to be used in their office.

ezTalks is a similar service great for hosting webinars and video conferences. You can also share files and screens, plus it’s free and easy to set up. The free version allows 40-minute video conferencing for up to 100 people per meeting. Like other programs, it does require you to pay for additional participants.

Zoom is a conference system similar to Skype. Although it does have a paid plan, it is free for 40-minute conferencing for up to 3 parties. If you plan to have more than 3 people on a call for longer than 40 minutes, this may not be the video conferencing solution for you.

Facetime is the latecomer to video conferencing. Apple finally added the ability to have multiple people on Facetime, up to 32 people. This feature is available for iOS 12.1 or later but unlike its competitors, it requires participants to have Facetime with iOS devices. And it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles you may need for your conference call such as screen and file sharing at the same time.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Technology #SmallBusiness #BusinessTips #VideoConference #ConferenceCall #Skype #Facetime #WebEx #Webinars

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