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Planning Retirement Online

You can do IT in laterlife 

August 2011

Getting the most from your computerYou can do IT is a regular feature of aimed at trying to help laterlife visitors make the most of Information Technology on or off the web. 

Jackie Sherman who runs the You can do IT Question & Answer section is an IT trainer and author. Jackie has spent her career in education and specialises in teaching IT to adults. Her courses for adults include such topics as MS Office, the Internet, e-mail and basic web page authoring.

Jackie has also written the books shown here - you can find more details about these by clicking on the cover images above. Jackie has also been running a course specifically for over 50s. 

Every day computer activitiesVia Jackie aims to particularly help those new to IT and the web to build up knowledge and confidence, so no question is too basic. At the same time she will cover Q&As for the more experienced user. 

So if you would like to ask a question of Jackie, why not email her 

Or if you have discovered something which may be of interest to others in making the most of the web, then she would love to hear about that too..

View previous editions of YoucandoIT for more useful Questions and Answers


August 2011

Cashback Sites

Q: Can you explain about cashback sites, and how easy it is to use them?

A: As you would expect, many companies pay websites that advertise their goods and services. Whenever someone visits one of the sites displaying an ad and then clicks on the advertisement, they are taken to the company website. The company concerned can then track this connection back and pay the website the agreed amount.

Cashback sites simply pay a small percentage of their fee directly to registered members of the public. It means they get far more traffic to their website and hence more advertising revenue.

My favourite is Top Cashback. It is quite free to join and once you are a member you can log in any time you decide to go shopping. Make sure you DO log in first, or your purchase will not be registered and tracked.

Join Top Cashback

In the main search box at the top of the page, you can type a product or service or the actual name of a company e.g. "travel insurance" or "Hilton Hotel". The list that is displayed will show any companies that are part of the scheme. If they are not listed, you will not get any cashback. (Take care as many companies have an advert on the Top Cashback site even though they are not part of the scheme.)

If they are involved properly, you will see an amount in ££s that you will receive if you click the orange Cashback button and then make a genuine purchase.

List of companies

Carry on by clicking the link to go to the company website, make your choices in the usual way and pay at the normal checkout. You should receive an email confirming that Top Cashback has tracked your activity.

Payments can take many months, but when they are due you need to log into your account. Click "My account" at the top of the page and check the Payments tab. Here, there are various ways you can choose to be paid such as cash via BACS into your bank or with vouchers.

Other tabs offer you a way to look at your earnings and to submit claims if you don't seem to have a payment tracked.



Problems Sending and Receiving Emails

Q: I am suddenly having problems sending and receiving emails. Can you suggest how to sort this out?

A: It is very difficult to do this from a distance, but a common reason for email issues is a clash with your security system. In particular, firewall or antivirus program settings may have been changed. For example, you may have recently installed a different antivirus and your email system may have problems working with it.

To see if this is the case, temporarily disconnect the firewall or program you suspect may be causing the problem and see if your emails now work properly.

If they do, you could try re-installing the same antivirus program, or try a different one and hope this restores all your functionality again. Otherwise, you may need to get some technical help from your email service provider.

Finding cheap Local Advertising on the Internet

Q: I run a small part-time business and would like to find more clients locally. Is there a cheap way to advertise on the Internet that will attract local people?

A: The best way to do this is to put an ad on Gumtree. Unless you live in London, it is free at the moment and you can keep putting on new ads to keep your information current.

When you go to you can select a town or county to search and then use keywords to find items for sale, rental properties, community events or services.


To put in your own advertisement, click the "Post a free ad" link at the top of the page and fill in all the details in the boxes provided. Make sure you select the correct town and category and take particular care with the title as this is what visitors to the site will read first. It needs to be clear and attractive or they won't open up your full advertisement. You can also upload a small picture that, again, makes your ad stand out.

Post a free ad

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Then visit the comment section of the Later Lifestyle Network, click on the 'Discussion Tab' (you can't see this until you are logged in) and create a new topic or add your views to an existing one. 

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The above article is part of the features section of called laterlife interest. laterlife interest contains a variety of articles of interest for visitors to written by a number of experienced and new journalists.

It includes both one off articles and also associated regular columns of a more specialist nature such as Healthwise, Gardener's Diary, our regular IT question and answer section called YoucandoIT and there's also 'It could be you' by Maggi Stamp laterlife's counsellor on human relationships. 

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