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Should you look for a channel partner who offers hosting?

Guest Post by Contributing Author Ken Presti

While sitting on a plane idly chatting with a small business owner last week, the conversation moved to computers. The guy was in the process of evaluating channel partners, and asked if it was important for a channel partner to offer managed services. My first instinct was to give him the falling-off-the-log obvious answer: “Well, gee… if you’re going to use managed services, then I guess my answer is yes. (Sarcasm sometimes gets the better of me, as you can see)  But then I realized his question actually went deeper than that. Read More »

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Changing Channel Partners, How to Make an Effective Break

January 28, 2011 at 9:12 am PST

Guest Post by Contributing author Ken Presti

There’s an old “Seinfeld” episode in which George and his girlfriend are breaking up. “It’s not you; it’s me!”, both claim. George gets angry. “I invented, “It’s not you, it’s me!”, he insists. Then, the girlfriend stares at him blankly and concedes. “Yes, George. It’s you.”

“Breaking up” with your channel partner doesn’t need to be anywhere near that dysfunctional. But a little bit of consideration and tact can go a long way towards making the transition easier. And I’m not saying that from the perspective of a touchy-feely California guy. I’m saying that because there is a lot that the outgoing partner can do to disrupt your business continuity. And you don’t want that! Read More »

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Connect Employees and Secure Your Network With Affordable New Hardware

The 200 Series Switches and RV 220W Network Security Firewall help make your network safer, more flexible

Many small companies want to give their employees options for getting their work done, especially now that so many people are using smart phones and tablet computers like the iPad to run productivity apps. These options include allowing remote access to the network, adding wireless services to the existing network, or enabling voice services.

This increase in connectivity options, however, comes with a security risk. It’s a balancing act that all companies—regardless of size—need to perform: You don’t want to risk unauthorized access via remote or wireless connections, so your network security measures should keep pace with your connectivity options.

The bottom line is that it all starts with the underlying hardware.

When looking to build out your network, focus on core networking products designed for small businesses, which provide the advanced features you need at an affordable price. These products are also easier to use than those designed for larger companies. (If you’re just starting to build a small business network, this post will give you some pointers.)

Cisco recently released new high-performance products designed to make it easier for you to connect and secure your network—the 200 Series Switches and the RV220W Network Security Firewall.

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If Disaster Strikes, NSS300 Can Help Keep You in Business

New cloud-based service offers an easy, reliable way to create offsite backups

Have you seen the latest numbers about small businesses and their disaster recovery plans? They’re pretty scary. In its 2011 SMB Disaster Preparedness Global Survey, Symantec found that half of small and mid-sized companies are not prepared for disaster. Of those 50 percent with no disaster-recovery plan, only 36 percent intend to implement a plan.

The risks are tremendous—a single disaster could put a small business out of business. In fact, an outage can cost as much as $12,500 a day, according to Symantec’s research. Even if the company gets back online, customers won’t necessarily return if they perceive the company to be unreliable.

Read More »

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New Cisco Products Available for Small Business

January 25, 2011 at 10:02 am PST

Eren Hussein, Director of Solutions Marketing for Cisco Small Business, shares details about new products, services and financing offers announced today, including:

Check out what Eren has to say, and then give us your feedback!

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