Accepting credit cards online - merchant account basics

If your business needs to accept credit card payments online, chances are you may have started out with a service like PayPal because of the low costs and the ease of integration.

But when you "outgrow" such a service, it's time to step up to a merchant account.


Q&A: ABN Amro's Popke Rein Munniksma on virtual worlds

As head of 3D experience at ABN Amro, Popke Rein Munniksma is experimenting with virtual worlds as an opportunity to promote the bank’s brand and cut the costs of internal meetings.

Here, we ask him about ABN Amro’s virtual world investments beyond the much-maligned Second Life, the challenges of gaining internal acceptance within his organisation and how he sees 3G technology being used within the firm’s existing websites.


Founder of UK blog network plays the blame game

I discussed the economics of blogging recently, sparking a bit of debate.

And it seems for good reason. The evolution of the blogosphere as a business hasn't been easy for many of its participants.


Site review: Oasis revamp

Fashion retailer Oasis has just launched a redesigned version of its website, with the stated aim of making the purchasing and checkout process smoother.

Oasis new website

We've had a look through the site to see if Oasis has managed to improve on the previous version...


BBC finally experiments with in-text 'links'

The BBC is experimenting with the idea of linking out to external sources from within the body text of its news articles, in a trial which will last for four weeks.

Obviously this is a good idea, though why it has taken a decade for the BBC to roll out a 'trial' is anybody's guess (though it won't have done any harm to The Beeb's own Pagerank).

However, the way it is going about this is, well, a little bit Noddy...


Web optimisation: the ultimate conversion insurance

The days of deploying your site changes to production without first testing functionality and cosmetics are long gone. 

So too will the days of deploying website changes that are not conversion tested. 


Entrepreneurs, profitability and opportunity cost

Last week, I came across an interesting blog post.

Giacomo Guilizzoni, who was formerly a senior engineering lead at Adobe, recently launched a software company called Balsamiq which is focused on developing plug-ins for existing "Web Office" platforms.

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Finding a domain name for your business via marketplaces

Are you looking for a great domain name for your business but can't find one?

It's a common experience due to the volume of domain names that have already been registered, especially .coms.


Used car search tools... suck!

I have been looking for a used car recently across a selection of manufacturer and third party sites, and it seems there is plenty of room for improvement in the way their search tools work.

Ideally, a search tool should be easy to use, but still allow users to choose between complex features and sort the results effectively.

So how do some of the major car manufacturers perform? 


Online Reputation Monitoring worth £60 Million in 2008

Econsultancy’s latest addition to its research, the Online Reputation and Buzz Monitoring Buyer’s Guide, reveals that this sector will grow by 30% in 2008, to an estimated value of £60 million.

The addition of this guide not only demonstrates the accelarated growth of this rapidly developing market, but also shows how the industry has moved on, from a rather fluffy approach to online PR, to quantitative measurement that incorporates analytics, monitoring tools and tangible metrics.


5 wireless network security tips

As my fellow E-consultancy blogger Drama 2.0 discussed earlier this week, the theft of more than 40mn credit and debit card numbers was due to insecure wireless networks.

If you run a wireless network at home or in the office, the same sort of security breach could easily occur if you are not taking advantage of your wireless router's security features.


The Web Week in Review

What caught Drama 2.0's attention this week? Find out before you leave for the weekend in the latest installment of The Web Week in Review.