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What SSL

Background information on SSL Certificates

What are SSL Certificates?

SSL Certificates provide secure, encrypted communications between a website and an internet browser. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, the protocol which provides the encryption. SSL Certificates are typically installed on pages or whole websites that require end-users to submit sensitive information over the internet such as personal data, credit card details and passwords. Pages such as payment pages, online forms and login pages should have SSL encryption.

Why Do I Need an SSL Certificate?

Data transferred in non-encrypted format can be intercepted between you and the webserver such that your communication and the data therein could be compromised and stolen. Online transactions may involve sending personal information such as credit card information, social security numbers, usernames and passwords. Cybercriminals who intercept unencrypted communications will gain full access to this data and can use it for fraudulent activities including identity theft and purchases. Trust and security are what make people confident enough to provide private or sensitive information online. SSL certificates demonstrates that a website or web page can be trusted. Any organisation must use an SSL certificate to secure their site if they wish to take online payments or expect their visitors to submit confidential information. Apart from building essential trust and security into your website, SSL certificates also help with SEO efforts as Google rates the use of an SSL as a positive ranking indicator.

SSL Products Overview

All SSL certificates are typically a combination of a Validation Level and Type.

Certificate Validation Levels

Extended Validated Certificates:

EV certificates provide the highest levels of security, trust and customer confidence for online businesses. EV certificates are issued only after the issuing Certificate Authority has conducted rigorous background checks on the company according to the guidelines laid out by the Certificate Authority/Browser (CA/B) Forum. Because of this, EV certificates contain a unique differentiator designed to clearly communicate the trustworthiness of the website to its visitors. Whenever somebody visits a website that uses an EV certificate, the address bar will turn green in major browsers such as Internet Explorer and Firefox however Chrome have dropped this pointing out that safe websites should be the norm on the internet. EV certificates are used by all major online retailers and banks and are highly recommended for businesses that wish to immediately build customer trust in their site. The browser address bar will include the company name with most popular browsers.

Organisation Validated Certificates:

OV certificates include full business and company validation from a certificate authority using their established and accepted manual vetting processes. Each OV certificate contains full company name and address details, which means they provide significantly higher levels of assurance to end-users than Domain Validated certificates. However, because they are not validated to the CA/B forum standards, they do not possess the ability to turn the browser address bar green.

Domain Validated Certificates:

DV certificates provide the same high levels of data encryption as the other validation levels however do not provide assurance about the identity of the business behind the website. Whereas EV and OV certificates are only issued after the applicant organisation has been manually vetted by a Certificate Authority, DV certificates are issued after domain control has been established using an automated online process. DV certificates are a popular choice amongst small-medium sized web sites because of their faster issuance times and lower price points.

Free Non-Validated Certificates:

FNV certificates are only available to Toucan Internet LLP clients and provide the same high levels of data encryption between the website and browser. There is no validation on the domain or the organisation but will engender trust with website users and assist as a positive ranking signal to Google. These have some value however any enterprise should consider a DV certificate as a minimum.

Certificate Types

Single Domain Certificates

A single domain certificate allows a customer to secure one Fully Qualified Domain Name on a single certificate. For example, a certificate purchased for www.domain.com will allow customers to secure any and all pages on www.domain.com. Single domain certificates are available in DV, OV,EV and FNV variants at a variety of price points and warranty levels. The straightforward nature of the single domain certificate makes it ideal for small to medium sized businesses managing a limited number of websites. However, businesses that operate or anticipate operating multiple websites may benefit from the added flexibility, convenience and savings offered by wildcard or multi-domain certificates.

Wildcard SSL Certificate

A Wildcard certificates allows businesses to secure a single domain and unlimited sub-domains of that domain. For example, a wildcard certificate for ‘*.domain.com’ could also be used to secure ‘payments.domain.com’, ‘login.domain.com, ‘anything-else.domain.com’ etc. A wildcard certificate will automatically secure any sub-domains that a business adds in the future. They also help simplify management processes by reducing the number of certificates that need to be tracked. For growing online businesses, Wildcard certificates provide a flexible, cost effective alternative to multiple single certificate purchases.

Multi Domain SSL Certificate (MDC)

As the name suggests, a Multi-Domain certificate allows website owners to secure multiple, distinct domains on a one certificate. For example, a single MDC can be used to secure domain-1.com, domain-2.com, domain-3.co.uk, domain-4.net and so on. Indeed, an MDC will allow you to secure up to 100 different domains (or wildcard domains) on a single certificate. Customers can easily add or remove domains at any time. This simplifies SSL management because administrators need only keep track of a single certificate with a unified expiry date for all domains instead of keeping tabs on multiple certificates. In addition, MDCs usually represent a cost saving over the price of individual certificates.

Unified Communications Certificate (UCC)

Unified Communications Certificates are specifically designed to secure Microsoft® Exchange and Office Communications environments. UC certificates use the Subject Alternative Name (SAN) field to allow customers to include up to 100 domains on a single certificate – eliminating the need for different IP addresses per website that would be required otherwise. UC Certificates also support the Microsoft Exchange Autodiscover service, a powerful feature which greatly eases client administration. As with MDCs, a single UCC can greatly reduce SSL management duties while allowing customers to realise cost savings over individual purchases.

References, Sources and further reading:

https://www.cnet.com/news/say-good-bye-to-that-green-secure-lock-on-google-chrome/ https://www.instantssl.com https://opensrs.com
Simon Thomas is a founding partner of Toucan Internet LLP; making a difference for clients looking for greater and unexpected outcomes from their digital engagement.

About the author

“Guidance like this is important to our clients when we provide SSL’s for websites and web apps that Toucan Internet has developed.” Simon also has 20 years direct marketing experience pre-internet and provides a unique blend of innovative advice based on experience and an informed understanding of today’s and tomorrow’s enabling technologies. simon@toucanweb.co.uk 01279 871 694
Author Simon Thomas 12th December 2018
https://www.toucanweb.co.uk

COMPANY FOCUS: Harry Specters

COMPANY FOCUS: Harry Specters

Award-winning flavours and positive social change – that’s Harry Specters. Mona, Shaz and their son Ash, who has autism, are behind this social enterprise. While visiting a chocolate shop on a holiday in Scotland in 2011, Mona discovered a perfect way of combining her passion for creating positive change for people with autism with her love for chocolate. Ash came up with the name and a year later, Harry Specters was born – dedicated to crafting the most delicious chocolates that create employment for young people with autism. 

Harry Specters, based in Ely>

We received a call back in 2015 when Harry Specters were ready to take their business to the next level. After their graphic designer had established their branding, colour scheme and logo, the next step was perfecting the packaging. They had an idea of what they wanted their packaging to look like, and it was our job to turn that vision into reality.

They wanted their packaging to exude quality and excellence whilst still being attractive to people of all ages and backgrounds. From our previous experience with food brands, we had a very good idea on what would work and what wouldn’t work in terms of size, shape and thickness. Our team of ‘cardboard engineers’ were able to create a whole range of options for Harry Specters to choose from.

The Desire Chocolate Box

The Desire Chocolate Box

The Allure Chocolate Box

The Allure Chocolate Box

As mentioned previously, Harry Specters was established for creating paid employment opportunities for young people and creating a product which everyone can enjoy! This cause is unique and is supported by us at GWD.

Harry Specters staff & work experience students

Harry Specters staff & work experience students

As well as the traditional selection boxes, Harry Specters wanted to be able to sell their chocolates in different quantities so they can fulfil different requirements. We created boxes which were made to hold their ‘Tasty Two’, ‘Finest Four’ and ‘Fine Nine’.

 

Finest Four

Finest Four

If you are looking for an award-winning sweet treat then Harry Specters have an online shop which you can visit here. Both Harry Specters and the GWD team are very pleased with our packaging creations thus far and we very much look forward to working with them again this year!


GWD Ltd are designers and manufacturers of presentation and promotional packaging.
You can reach them on (01279) 416 093 or at the company’s website:
www.gwd.ltd.uk

Search Engine Marketing

Fundamental health check and opportunity spotting for your website

Introduction

Keywords

So your website has been built and properly optimised for the search engines, directories and local search tools; it is now ready to be promoted.

This doesn’t necessarily mean engaging a dedicated search engine optimisation and marketing team, though the results from such programs are normally very effective. It does mean making certain that the world is accepting your new web site as you expected and making sure that nothing that could impede its success remains undiscovered.

“We really don’t want to be scratching our heads in six months from the launch wondering why it’s not performing and regretting the investment.”

You want to be celebrating the website meeting the objectives you set for it.

Don’t for one minute think that building a great website with quality content will work on its own. Your website is part of a bigger marketing ecosystem and needs to be linked in accordingly; linking typically with Social Media programs, the wider marketing activities of the enterprise, the blog, the traditional marketing, your legacy backlinks etc.

It’s at this stage where so many websites of great potential fail as there is a need to watch how a website is accepted or not by the search engines and optimise accordingly.

The Search Engine Marketing (SEM) performed by Toucan Internet is a mix of promotion, monitoring and feedback. The feedback is provided to you with the sole objective of improving your website performance and is focussed on specific outbound and inbound improvements in line with your performance goals.

We provide feedback in the form of basic reports and a commentary that you can act upon as you feel appropriate. It does give you the professional test and monitoring essential to any business activity where performance is critical. Search Engine Optimisation and SEM are essential and inseparable partners, each one feeding the other in a loop of continuous improvement.

Promote, Monitor and Feedback

www.ebusiness-cards.co.uk

Our mission is to see our clients get greater results and we promote to the search engines (SE) and directories in a number of ways. Since Google is the prime referrer nationally and internationally for b2b and b2c, this search engine is the prime focus of activity as it will return the highest rewards once successful. Google performance and feedback is reviewed manually every session in some depth. You will be asked to include a Google verification code in your website so we can gain access to Google’s valuable activity and performance data held for your website in their webmaster section. We will also need you to add a Google tracking code so we can access the visitor data captured by them and therefore provide qualified feedback.

We promote to the prime SE’s manually and the rest using automatic submission software.  We manually verify your listing on Google, Yahoo UK, Bing and DMOZ – The Open Directory Project.

We manually submit the site to local and individual referrers such as UFindUs and Hotfrog and subsequently check for a positive listing.

Once the promotion is complete, reports are compiled including one for all the automatic submissions and a more detailed one for the manual SE including a comprehensive analysis of Google’s take on your site.

We analyse these results in line with your goals and will feed back our recommendations. The recommendations should be considered for your SEO activities and will likely involve updates to the website so the site will play a stronger hand to the search engines, particularly Google.

The Typical Routine
For most clients we perform this comprehensive SEM routine on a cyclical basis with most clients having such a review every three months

After the first registration session the next recommended session is at the six-week point and then three monthly thereafter. This programme can be tailored to specific needs.

After each session you will receive submission and analysis reports. After the second session the results will normally start to appear and we can see clear indicators as to how to improve the results, if need be.

Whilst there is no firm guarantee of a search engine position without paying for it by a Pay Per Click campaign (PPC), Toucan does gain good results for its clients who understand that we have to work together to get the results over a period of time. We will of course also help you establish PPC campaigns if required.

Our Promise

  • We agree the goals for the website in the form of key terms & phrases under which the site is to be found in line with your website optimisation
  • We manually promote to the key search engines and monitor accordingly
  • We manually monitor in-depth Google activity
  • We manually promote to emerging directories and local search type websites
  • We provide a report of manual monitoring and promotional activity
  • We provide an online report of automatic submissions with history
  • We provide you an online Ranking report for Key engines and with history and graphs for multiple key terms
  • We provide you a list of recommendations in summary for future SEO of the site

As Toucan needs to keep up to date with the ever changing requirements of SEO and SEM this programme is subject to change as new practices, search tools and requirements evolve.

If you have any special requirements or would like to discuss these programmes in more detail, please contact us at:

Toucan Internet LLP

t: 01279 871 694

e: info@toucanweb.co.uk

Chocolate Boxes Manufactured in the UK

There are two very big dates coming soon for Chocolatiers: Valentine’s Day, when it is estimated that at least £1.6billion is spent on gifts and treats for the occasion across the UK, and of course, Mother’s Day, which this year falls on March the 26th.

New research shows that the average Brit is set to spend as much as £50 on their Mother this year, up from £27.17 in 2014, with as much as £928 million being spend across the Country. Naturally, a very large proportion of that will be spent of chocolate – which remains British peoples’ second gift of choice for the occasion, behind flowers. That’s a very substantial market.

mother’s day chocolate packaging

Many retailers will be (as usual) taking advantage of the increase ‘panic buying’ in the 48 hours up to Valentine’s and Mothers’ Day. If you are a florist or a chocolatier you want your products to be catching the eyes of the buyers – and what better way to do that than with attractive and innovative presentation packaging?

chocolate box makers UK

Here at GWD Ltd we have been creating packaging for chocolatiers for almost 30 years, including boxes for big name brands such as Bettys of Harrogate, multiple Academy Of Chocolate and International Chocolate Award winners, Rococo Chocolates,   and the Grown Up Chocolate Company. Our blog has detailed previously how we are one of a very few packaging companies in the UK who can create round ‘hat’ boxes , but we also manufacture star-shaped boxesheart-shaped boxes and indeed pretty much any shape you can think of, including triangular, octagonal and even teardrop-shaped ones.

presentation boxes in unusual shapes

Our cardboard engineers are adept at rising to challenges set by clients and their designers. We can either work from a specific design that you may have in mind, or our on-site design team can work together with you and come up with something entirely new and unique. We are not a wholesaler, we design and make the majority of our boxes here in the UK, meaning there is no minimum order number and we retain total control over lead times.

GWD are also happy to have face-to-face meetings to discuss your requirements and can offer quotes by email or telephone. Manufacturing in the UK means we can also handle short notice arrangements when possible.

Make your chocolates stand out from the competition. You know how good they taste – why not give them the presentation packaging they deserve!


Noel Greenwood is the Managing Director of GWD Ltd, the designers and manufacturers of presentation and promotional packaging. You can reach him on (01279) 416093 or at the company’s website: www.gwd.ltd.uk

Chocolate Boxes Manufactured in the UK

Packaging for Florists and Floral Arrangements

Well here we are again, back at work after the Christmas Holidays! Here at GWD

we’re lucky in that the normal New Year dread or malaise doesn’t actually apply – there’s always something fascinating to get our teeth into! This week we’re working on a new heart-shaped hatbox for flowers, see below…

hat boxes for florists

It’s that time of year again when a lot of our work relates to Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Easter – all of which are fast approaching. Chocolates, of course, are a very popular gift and we make a great deal of packaging for confectionery at this time of year. However, it’s presentation packaging for florists that pre-occupies GWD at present.

hat boxes for floral arrangements

Our Blog has spoken previously about round, ‘hat’ boxes and how GWD is one of a very few companies in the UK with the ability to create them. Circular boxes (above) are perfect for floral displays and show off the beauty of any arrangement to great effect.

Where can I find packaging for my flowers?

Above is an example of a hatbox created for roses for a small independent florist in Scotland, demonstrating that you don’t have to have multiple outlets to have great packaging. The matt black wrapping and foil blocked-in gold gives a fantastic, upmarket feel to the floral arrangement within. Valentine’s and Mother’s Days are occasions when customers are prepared to pay a little more for gifts to express their regards and affection to their loved ones, so many florists will invest in special presentation packaging for the occasion, such as the stunning boxes (below) that we created for Royal Queen Roses, another independent florist, this time in Cyprus!  The fact that the cost of shipping these boxes to Cyprus is not inconsiderable indicates that our services are not only rare in the UK, but in Europe also.

‘They are not cheap to ship, and also shows that our skills are not only rare in the UK but Europe as well? Over to you”

Specialist boxes for florists

Of course we don’t just provide circular or heart-shaped boxes for florists – if you are looking for a more traditional square or rectangular box we can provide those too (see below). So if you are a florist (or indeed a chocolatier) and would like to make your flowers stand out for the special dates to come, why not give us a call? We have over thirty years experience in the presentation packaging industry and are considered leaders in the field.

Rectangular boxes for flowers


Noel Greenwood is the Managing Director of GWD Ltd, the designers and manufacturers of presentation and promotional packaging. You can reach him on (01279) 416093 or at the company’s website: www.gwd.ltd.uk

Packaging for Florists and Floral Arrangements

Givers Gain in action

A BNI colleague (a recruitment consultant) referred me to an accountant.  The accountant referred me to a retail client of his.  The retailer became my client.  I referred the retailer to another BNI colleague, a business coach.  The retailer hired the business coach, who advised him that his business needed more staff.  Guess who got the job of recruiting the extra staff ?

Givers Gain in action

Want more business? Then come to our Visitors Day on 29 November

Want more business?

Come to our visitors’ day at Gateway to Business BNI, 6.45am on 29 November 2012.

Great breakfast, great business opportunities.

Book now!

 

Gateway-to-Business (GTB) networking group which has generated an impressive £1.4m worth of business for its members since the start of this year alone, is inviting more local companies to share in this success by coming along to its Visitors’ Day on 29 November.

The GTB group — which is part of Business Networking International (BNI), the world’s largest referral organisation — brings together more than 30 local businesses every Thursday for a breakfast meeting at the Hilton Hotel at Stansted Airport at 6.45am. Far more than just a talking shop, every member has grown their businesses by more than £30,000 since the start of 2012, despite the challenging economic conditions.

This year, the GTB members aim to break an annual record by generating £2 million worth of business through a combination of internal and external referrals. This will be achieved by growing GTB to 40 members over the next couple of months, and local business owners and managers are encouraged to visit on 29 November.

With only one business in any one sector able to join, becoming a member of BNI locks out the competition, and the GTB group is currently looking for florists and video production companies who want to grow their businesses and become part of the area’s premier networking and referral organisation.

Download Attachment

Want more business? Then come to our Visitors Day on 29 November

Visitors’ Day – 22 November – Bring a business day

Leadership Team Announcement:

Want more business?

Come to our visitors’ day at Gateway to Business BNI, 6.45am on 22 November 2012.

Great breakfast, great business opportunities.

Book now!

 

Gateway-to-Business (GTB) networking group which has generated an impressive £1.4m worth of business for its members since the start of this year alone, is inviting more local companies to share in this success by coming along to its Visitors’ Day on 22 November.

The GTB group — which is part of Business Networking International (BNI), the world’s largest referral organisation — brings together more than 30 local businesses every Thursday for a breakfast meeting at the Hilton Hotel at Stansted Airport at 6.45am. Far more than just a talking shop, every member has grown their businesses by more than £30,000 since the start of 2012, despite the challenging economic conditions.

This year, the GTB members aim to break an annual record by generating £2 million worth of business through a combination of internal and external referrals. This will be achieved by growing GTB to 40 members over the next couple of months, and local business owners and managers are encouraged to visit on 22 November.

With only one business in any one sector able to join, becoming a member of BNI locks out the competition, and the GTB group is currently looking for florists and video production companies who want to grow their businesses and become part of the area’s premier networking and referral organisation.

Visitors’ Day – 22 November – Bring a business day

New website ten years later

When Lattenbury Services required a professional website in 2002 Toucan Internet were recommended by their professional advisors and we designed and built a website that met the requirements and lasted ten years with a few modifications along the way. Since Lattenbury Services were pleased with the consistent service offered by Toucan over the years, despite keen local competition, we were asked to redevelop this simple but important site that we’re now pleased to publish.

www.lattenburyservices.co.uk

The work also required some branding work to define more strict control of the logo and the strapline. Lattenbury Services offer construction services for the countryside. The bridges, footpaths, water courses and environmental and archaeological works are all best demonstrated with clear pictures. The site’s original creative design therefore includes many quality images rotating on the pages with information splashes, making for an interesting and captivating visitor experience.

Whilst Lattenbury Services do not run a social media program at the moment, we included popular social shares so that visitors can promote this website out through their social channels.

Let’s see this website stand the test of time like the original one produced in 2002.

For more information and a chat about affordable professional website development and how Toucan Internet LLP can improve your online success, please feel free to contact Simon at the contact points below.

t: 01279 871 694

e: simon@toucanweb.co.uk

w: www.toucanweb.co.uk

Copyright Toucan Internet LLP 2012©. All rights reserved.

New website ten years later

What a lovely box – new website release.

Other:

Presentation packaging manufacturer GWD Ltd. of Harlow commissioned Toucan Internet LLP to redevelop their website to clearly display the company’s skills in making bespoke presentation packaging.

The new GWD website complies with all the necessary web construction standards for wide acceptance and the big sequencing display images are rendered using a technology that is functional on iPads and iPhones too as well as conventional PC screens. Don’t underestimate the growing number of users of these i-devices making buying decisions by browsing websites; so make certain your next website is as good on these mobile devices as it is on a desktop computer screen.

Noel Greenwood, Managing Director of GWD Ltd. said “Being able to clearly display our novel and innovative presentation packaging designs to customers is so important and the new website from Toucan does this so well.”

See www.gwd.ltd.uk

What a lovely box – new website release.