Booklet Tips – Prevention Vs Eliminate Pain

Which do you think is more compelling for people to buy your tips booklet – something about preventing a potential problem or specific ways to alleviate and eliminate pain of some sort?

While logic and your personal point of view may dictate it makes more sense to learn how to prevent a catastrophe from happening if at all possible, human nature tends to work against that. The pain, on many levels, of having a hard drive crash on your computer is a great motivator to do frequent back-ups that are also housed in multiple places, from that moment forward, for as long as you remember or have automatic systems in place. It's a stronger motivator, in many cases, than being presented with an excellent compilation of where to do back-ups locally and in the cloud, how much of your files to back up at any given time, how much storage space to expect, and how often to do those back-ups.

You may be in a region that is known for having fires or floods or extreme weather. Tips on how to prepare for any of those acts of nature have much greater meaning after living through any of those events, much more than anticipating what it would be like before it happens.

The prevention tips are logical and can be un-enticing without going through the painful experience of the hard drive crash or losing a home or any of the endless other potentially possibilities.

So where does that leave you as a booklet author? It depends, does not it? In general terms, people will often do quite a bit, take action they might not take take, do things faster than they might otherwise do to get out of pain or to minimize it once they are in it. Yes, there are some people who are willing to take preventive measures. Among the population at large, more people are disinclined to do prevention.

As the expression goes, timing is everything. You may want to consider creating information that addresses the before, during, and after points in the catastrophe depending on your topic and knowledge, or simply the before and after. It can be helpful for those people who truly will do prevention before disaster ever strikes at all or before it strikes again. The booklet focused specifically on after the disaster will have a more knowing and compassionate tone to it, realizing the reader has gone through the experience and is now on the other side of it ready to do what they can to become whole again.

ACTION – Notice how you currently focus your information and marketing efforts if what you have is in any way attached to pain in a personal or professional context and is specifically comprised of prevention tips. Consider testing an expansion and re-positioning of your information to eliminate or minimize pain and see what results you have in interest and sales. It is completely possible to maintain the caring and concern style you demonstrated in the prevention approach in the new position of pain elimination or minimizing.

“Turn Your Tips Into Products, Your Tips Products Into Moneymakers.TM”

© 2014

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Are You Short Of Cash?

Learn How to Build a Business Online

Has your life turned dull? Are you fed up, being short of money, tired of making ends meet? Why not learn a new skill, start a paying hobby, a new skill that pays you for your time and effort. Would you like to learn how to make money on-line like millions of others, and learn how to get started.

First you need an overview of what's involved. You will have to “get serious” about learning a new skill and be prepared to commit some spare time on a regular basis. But it can be a fun, exciting and rewarding challenge.

You'll Need a Good Mentor

Make life easy for your-self find a good mentor, someone you can refer to, who works in a style that suits your learning type. If you are completely new to Internet Marketing you need someone who will take you by the hand directing you slowly, step by step through instructional videos, showing you how to build your own website or use a ready-made one. You will be taught how to market your products, how to get your website ranked on Google, how to write emails that excite people to become interested in your products and much, much more. You will make new friends on the forums, with like-minded people. Generally I have found on-line marketers to be a very generous bunch, who go out of their way to support and help newcomers.

Choosing the Right Products

What products are best sellers, and best choices for you to sell, also how to find best sellers. How to find the niche or area best for you. It should be something you can feel passionate about and enjoy working with and introducing to others, if you feel it is an excellent product you will enjoy encouraging people to buy it. It will make your life more interesting. It will drive you on when you hit a stumbling block in your learning curve. A product you want to share will make writing copy easier, more productive and help you advertise it. There are hundreds of niches you can chose from, a good mentor will explain how to choose one right for you. You will end up with a successful hobby / business you enjoy spending time promoting.

Learn Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is selling other people's products for a good percentage of the asking price. This can be an easier way for the beginner to start on-line. There are many products to choose from, e-books and courses on Click-bank, which is a large on-line bookstore, or Amazon selling actual products and books, plus many other offers can be found on-line.

Why Is Affiliate Marketing a Good Starting Point?

It's easy to find a product. Delivery is taken care of for you. Marketing tools may be supplied. There may be banners and emails also general help or tips may be provided.

A New Hobby for Winter

Does all this sound exciting, could spice up your life a little. Would you like to learn a new skill in your spare time. All you need is a PC or laptop, nothing special. Age is unimportant, male or female, young or old, you do not need A levels you just follow simple step by step videos and build up your skills. You work at your own pace, in the warmth and comfort of your own home, no traveling no boss.

It's not an instant get rich scheme, but given time and effort thousands of people are making money to boost their incomes and many make a full-time income on-line. Would you like to explore Internet Marketing further and see if this would be right for you. A new interest, which might unlock talents you did not know you had, this could be a whole new beginning. Are you ready to start your journey …

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Interesting Facts About The Paper Industry In India

The paper industry is one of the oldest industries in the country. It is more than 100 years old and there are many manufacturing mills in India which provide employment to the people. These mills manufacture all types of paper which are used for a wide variety of purposes.

Three different types of raw materials are used to manufacture paper which includes agro based, wood based and waste paper based materials. Today there are more than a hundred mills in India which is expanding at a tremendous rate. Different types of modernization techniques are also used in these industries.

The current scenario of the Indian pulp industry showcases huge developmental changes in various fields of the industry. The industry has adopted new techniques and advanced managerial skills to promote the development of the sector. Today there are a large number of foreign investors who have set up new plants in India. The county has become a paper manufacturing hub for the past several years.

Moreover, the government has initiated several steps to improve this industry in the country. Hand made paper is one of the most common products used in various fields. This industry provides employment opportunities to a wide section of rural population. It strictly requires a huge amount of capital as all the raw materials can be derived from recycling agricultural waste products such as raw bananas, cotton rags, jute, straw and many more. The hand made pulp industry manufactures a wide variety of products which are in great demand even in the international markets. Boxes, greeting card, bags, photo frames, diaries, albums and so forth are some of the most popular products which are exported to foreign countries.

To the constant increase in the number of educational facilities and schools in the country, there has been a substantial increase in the demand for books and other paper products in India.

Although the demand for this versatile product has increased manifold in the past few years, the industry still faces a few difficulties. Procurement of fibrous raw materials is one of the biggest challenges faced by this industry. As most of the forest-based raw materials are inaccessible and difficult to procure, most of the industries have to depend on imported pulp for production. This has seriously affected the industry in many ways. The industry incurs huge shipping and transportation costs to import raw materials from the foreign land.

Majority of the companies in the country has expanded and modernized which has affected the prices of these products in the domestic and international markets. The country produced around 16 million tons of paper every year, based on recent studies. There is an unlimited scope for development in this industry which is quite clear from the current scenario of the sector. There are many reputed industries and companies in India which mainly manufacture paper products. With its vast modernization techniques and expansion efforts, the industry will procure a strong position in the international markets in the future.

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Which Is Better: PayPal or a Merchant Account?

Recently, in one of the Facebook groups I participate in, the question areose again. Should one use PayPal or a merchant account in one's business? I used to run marketing teleseminars weekly for a merchant account vendor and this question came up on almost every call.

PayPal: Let's Review

You're probably all quite familiar with PayPal. It's a third party processor. You, the merchant, never see your customers' credit card information. PayPal collects it and puts the money into your PayPal account. From there you can spend the money by paying for things with PayPal, using the PayPal debit card to spend the money, or transferring it to your bank account, which takes about 2-3 days.

You do not need a shopping cart to use PayPal – you can create buttons right in PayPal to use on your site or in emails. There are many carts that will integrate with PayPal, however, should you want to use one.

Typically, the merchant is charged 2.9% of the transaction to use PayPal. There are better rates available for merchants with higher monthly sales.

What About a Merchant Account?

A merchant account allows you to take credit cards directly. You will have a relationship with a vendor, such as DirectPay, PowerPay, Stripe, or even your own bank. Behind them will be a gateway, such as Authorize.net or Verisign that allows transactions online. It's the account information for your gateway that you will set up in your shopping cart in order to accept payments.

While you can manually enter transactions with a gateway, for most online sales, you will want a shopping cart to work with a merchant account.

Merchant account fees are often pretty complicated. There will be per transaction fees. They will be something like 2.6% plus 30 cents per transaction. No-swipe fees – when you do not swipe the card, such as in online purchases, are higher. You will almost always have a monthly minimum for the fees. If it's $ 25 for example, if your transaction fees for a month add up to $ 25 or more, you're good. If they do not, you will be charged the difference between what they add up to and $ 25. You will also have a monthly statement fee – usually around $ 10 – and a monthly gateway fee – also usually around $ 10.

Whew! Pretty confusing, huh? And it looks like all those fees must make it cost more than PayPal, right? Not necessarily. I'll get into that in just a bit.

The money from a transaction will automatically be deposited into your bank account in 2 days.

What Do Customers Think?

Does using PayPal affect how customers view your business? Will they avoid buying from you if you only accept PayPal?

When I started my business more than a decade ago, PayPal was seen as the more amateur choice for smaller vendors who could not afford a merchant account. Online business was just getting going and a merchant account allowed the online vendor to look more like an offline 'real' business.

It's different now. There are very reputable and big businesses who use PayPal. I do not feel the image of a business is harmed by using PayPal today.

So How Do You Decide?

It really comes down to two things. The first is financial. Even though merchant accounts have all those costs, there is a monthly sales point where PayPal's higher transaction fees will be more than a merchant account's lower transaction fees plus all the other fees. Do the calculation for a particular vendor and see how it fits with your projected sales.

The second factor is customer service. I've never had a problem with PayPal, but others have. I also know some online marketers whose merchant account suddenly stopped functioning in the middle of a big launch. If you have a merchant account, you will most likely require support at some point and I prefer phone support for potentially complicated issues around online transactions. So if you're contemplating getting this type of account, do some research, ask your collections, and pick one that has a good reputation for customer service.

What do I use? I used to have a merchant account, and now I use PayPal. I've never had a serious problem with either, and never had a customer who found it questionable that I use PayPal.

So remember, this is just your next decision, not your last one. You can always change your mind!

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The Superman Complex: How It’s Hurting Your Small Business

“Small business owners have a bad habit of trying to do everything themselves,” writes Cash Miller in Small Business Delivered. After all, most business owners start out with just an idea of ​​a product or service to provide. Often, all the technical stuff that a business requires is overlooked. As a business owner, you can easily find yourself one day trying to be a lawyer, accountant, marketing expert, and a slew of other roles at the same time. In the meantime, actually running your business takes a back seat. This certainly is not ideal. As such, you may want to get outside help. This can free up your time to focus on your business. Leaving other tasks to the professionals means that they get it all done right and in less time to boot.

Legal

From getting all the required permits to making sure you comply with the many constantly changing federal, state, and local laws (such as those relating to fair labor), obtaining professional legal advice can save you loads of time and headaches. This includes potentially saving you from stiff fines or even imprisonment.

Accounting

Many people dread the word “accounting” and specifically “taxes,” and with good reason. First of all, mathematics just is not the strength of many. Keeping accurate, updated records of transactions, payroll, bills, taxes, etc., can make anyone dizzy. On top of this, in business, almost every move you make can be subject to tax. Paying the wrong amount or even failing to file on time can lead to stiff penalies. Save yourself the trouble and get someone with professional training to handle your books.

Marketing

Elise Wile of Demand Media writes in Chron Small Business: “No matter how good your product or service is, if the public is not aware of it, your business will not be a success.” Marketing is yet another role that can distract you from focusing on said product or service. It involves a lot of research and implementation to effectively reach your target market. Aside from traditional marketing, digital marketing simply can not be ignored or underutilized in today's world. While it provides cost-effective tools for the small guys to compete with, it also offers to be complex and time-consuming. With so many platforms and all this talk of figuring out algorithms and curating content, online marketing is a rapidly growing industry in itself. This means there are plenty of experts out there that can help.

Other Things to Consider

There are a host of other roles needed to run a business, such as human resources, office management, and tech support. With so many things to do, business owners who are just starting out tend to have the “Superman Complex” coined by Max Carey as far back as the 1980s. A victim of the complex, Max had frequent breakdowns and a failing business. Learning what tasks to outsource or delegate turned both his life and business around. With that being said, however, remember who's the boss and keep an eye on everything to make sure things are going the way you want them.

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How to Manage Conflict at Work: Part 1 – The Issues

Managing conflict at work can be one of the most valuable skills any leader developments. A team which differences are expected among each other – strengths, work patterns, communication styles, personalities and life choices – is a powerful team. A manager who encourages diversity and is equipped to manage difference skillfully is an asset to any company.

One of the most stressful things in any professional's life is heading in to work every day knowing that there's someone they have to interact with that will cause them stress. To do this day in day out, for weeks and months on end is like slow torture and can lead to anxiety, sick days and physical and mental health issues. All too often this is not the result of 2 people in a team who can not get on, it's the result of a manager, not being equipped to spot relationship difficulties among their people, and if they do spot it, not having the skills to manage the process towards awareness, resolve and active professional development.

I have seen and heard horrific examples of poorly managed teams and poorly managed managers. These include:

• public humiliations of jobs done poorly around a table of 14 team leaders – a project picked apart in front of peers' why did it happen ?! what were you thinking ?! this is worse than useless ?! ';

• an inadequate manager avoiding a conflict situation in her team, which escalated to a violent outburst followed by one of the 2 parties being signed off work into a mental health unit for 6 weeks until perspective and stability had been re-established. The investigation focussed on the actions of the 2 employees and not on the manager as requiring intensive further training and development;

• an director who had been with a company for 22 years (estimated to manage out of the business). The turnover in his team was intensive because the managers were constantly fed with non-timely, incomplete information, given little direction, and when a project or task was presented to repeat or refine it given the new information that only at that presentation was shared by the director. This director played a very political game with the board of the company, discrediting (over time) his managers who absolutely took their skills elsewhere.

As a corporate and executive coach I mainly deal with high performing, aware professionals what goal is to be clear about their strengths and their ability to contribute to the maximum in the rolls they're in (like a national athlete working ongoing with a personal trainer ). However, in at least half of every case I'm asked to consider, a director or manager want's me to 'fix' a person who reports in to them 'make them see', 'get them to understand how their actions impact the team '.

In these cases I have to explain (sometimes to the point of losing the contract) that if I 'fix' this person without having the ability to coach their manager to increase his / her skills and awareness it's a poor time and money investment for the company. It's like teaching a child cleanliness then leaving them in a home where the parent's shower once a week – it just increases the child's awareness that the culture they live in is not developed enough for them to fully thrive.

The issues for companies with potential conflicts between employees are:

• how to justify the waste of time, money and productivity once a conflict situation gains its full momentum (employees, leaders, human resources, knock on effect to team morale)

• how to skill their staff up to ask for help before a situation escalates

• how to train managers to know the difference between normal creative friction and ongoing, stress-enhancing, harmful behavior

• how to continue to develop teams and leaders regardless of there being issues and conflict situations (so being proactive in keeping professionalism and awareness high)

In Part 2 of this article I'll highlight the top 5 solutions to managing conflict at work stay tuned!

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Why It Is Important to Install Vending Machines in Offices

Vending machines are of great importance now especially for schools and offices. Coffee and tea are beverages that are regularly consumed by staff members. That is why most companies these days prefer to have beverage vending machines installed in their workplaces. A cup of tea succeeds in not only breaking the monotony while also refreshing employees as they work. In fact, some people just can not do without their daily dose of caffeine.

However, these vending machines can also lead to unnecessary problems if they are not properly set up. As a result, most companies are going online to get recommendations and suggestions for getting the best vending machines and services.

A number of workplaces also need food dispensing machines. Having the right vending machine depends on what the company feels about food and drinks in the workplace, the performance of machine and related costs etc. There are many vending machines companies today that can provide completely new or used vending equipment for your firm.

However, one of the first things to consider is cost. Do you need to go with a brand new machine or can you opt for a used one? Like any other business transaction, you need to ensure that you are not unnecessarily paying more than what is needed. Do not forget that vending equipment can be costly, so getting extra bells and whistles will affect your pocket adversely as well.

Second, you would want the needs of your staff to be addressed. This will help you decide the type and number of machines that might be required in the workplace. It is also essential that you do some research. Get some reviews and suggestions from other users who are already using these machines before buying them. This will help you to figure out whether the machine that you are considering is of good quality or not. The internet can also help you in your search. You need to figure out the type of machine that you need, the design of the machine, its size and its functions. Also keep in mind that there are many vending machines that do not operate well and there are some that can perform only some functions. So knowing what you want can save you from unnecessary heartache later on.

There are a number of web-based referral providers that can offer quotes on vending machines installation available for anyone who needs them. These online service providers can help you get an idea about how companies can best satisfy your demands and specifications. Having different quotes can help you choose the equipment that you need. After that you just need to get the machine installed in your workplace and take proper care of the machine so that it continues to function optimally for as long as possible.

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Stupendous Civil Engineering Work By Civil Engineers

This article is about the technology and science expertise civil engineering works. Here you can come to know about the excellent track record of civil engineering service on its various projects. The highly experienced and profitable civil construction services providers can provide extensive service on all civil construction sectors including land surveying, land use planning, commercial, structural, and residential design.

The efficient architects have its own thumb print in the genre of engineering skill. Land Construction being a professional engineering discipline deals with the design, construction, and maintenance of any construction project. The efficient civil engineers are highly capable of executing all kind of project with great proficiency. It is having a wide range of service area which includes medical center, utility design, church design, and many more. Incredible construction service provider stand unique with its unbeatable credibility and reputation for providing professional services to both their commercial and residential clients. It is due to the great efficiency of the them that they take up government projects like roads, bridges, dams and etc with great ease and complete it with flawless success.

This field of constructors or architects is well supported with highly qualified and experienced professionals of civil engineering. Being professional and reliable they are now intensively providing service all over this place. They are serving for both residential and commercial requirements. The trained professionals can perform the work with complete efficiency and knowledge.

Civil engineering is a vast canvas which also includes services like, land surveying, land use planning, commercial, structural, and residential design with great excellence. Site accessibility design comes under the category of land use planning.

Main domain of civil engineering:

• Creative project funding
• Budget report
• Document control system
• Site accessibility program

The professionals in this field are reliable regarding the budget report, which may assist the architect in the development of design. They are highly efficient in providing cost efficient budgets to their clients. It is their dedication towards their client that is truly appreciable for the structural development. By providing best quality raw material, labor and other service the civil construction firms can offer the best civil construction service for both private and public sector.

The proficient civil engineers are absolutely commendable regarding their commitments and quality service to maintain their high standards in this genre. Being knowledgeable and then can assure you an easy consultation regarding construction service for commercial, structural, and residential design and other services.

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The Most Effective B2B Sales and Marketing Strategies?

Taking advantage of business-to-business (B2B) sales opportunities is important to the bottom line for a growing number of companies. With a lingering recession and high unemployment figures in the background, businesses of all sizes are allocating additional time and resources to their B2B communication activities. This marketing approach can be even more effective by adding two common-sense strategies:

  • Improved B2B Negotiations
  • Improved Business Writing

However, many companies overlook these prudent steps in their rush to make a sale.

Negotiating Delivery Terms and Prices

While many business owners dislike negotiating, the negotiating process should not be overlooked during the B2B sales cycle. “Everything is negotiable” can be a helpful reminder to negotiate the best financial terms even when a customer appears unwilling to be flexible.

In addition to applying this strategy to a pending sale, companies should be equally attaching to the value of negotiating when buying from a supplier. As noted by Roger Dawson, “You will never make more money than when you are negotiating.”

Improving the Bottom Line for Business Writing

Most business executives are eagerly searching for a more effective way to tap into the world of internet sales and marketing. In many cases, the most straightforward approach to do this is to improve the quality of online business writing. Why? Here are two inescapable reasons:

  • Google and other search engines are increasingly becoming more discriminating about what passes muster in search algorithms.
  • Business customers frequently use a company's written message as a proxy for judging the overall excellence of a business enterprise.

A high percentage of contemporary online business publishing content was produced at the shipping cost of one to five cents per word by some thrift business buyers observing a “low bidder” mentality. Should business owners really expect this approach to put their best foot forward for either smart search engines or smart customers?

The Bottom Line Keeps Moving

The power of search engines to influence internet users is still evolving. The roles of keywords, images and unique text in search algorithms are changing. What worked 10 years ago is not necessarily a viable strategy today.

The costs of operating any business are subject to constant review. Business writing clients regularly attempt to improve the bottom line with improved efficiencies for writing expenditures. Marketing and public relations are not immune from budget cuts. Business writing costs must be scrutinized along with all labor expenses. Persuasive business writing incrementally needs to be cost-effective as well.

However, common sense suggests that there are practical limits to what B2B marketing can achieve when too much attention is devoted to keeping business writing expenses throttled at prices that preclude consistent quality. What does anyone realistically hope to achieve when trying to buy a high-quality commodity for between a penny and a nickel per word? Of course, discerning search engines and customers will not be fooled – and will often penal companies that try to sacrifice quality at the expense of unsuspecting clients.

The Need for Expert Solutions: Business Negotiating and Business Writing

The increased value of expert solutions poses a serious challenge for businesses everywhere. The working definitions of expertise are a moving target – but are qualified expert negotiators and writers likely to be consistently available at the same price as unqualified personnel?

The jury is still out on the impact of social media, but popularity appears to be an impartial proxy for either writing or negotiating expertise. The importance of internet visitors and keyword density has been superseded by a need to supply specialized answers and help. This quality shift serves applaause by everyone in the internet and B2B community.

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Why WordPress Is Ideal For Small Business

WordPress is ideal for creating an efficient website for SMEs. There is no need to sign up for night school to study IT or invest in costly or a license; you can simply log in and get started. WordPress offers an extensive range of designs and features, allowing the majority of companies to create the website they want for marketing their goods and services.

With an in-built content management system (CMS), WordPress also makes it easy to keep your business website up-to-date. If you have a computer, internet access and are confident using Word, you will have no problem in keeping your website current without the need for a technical guy. As your business evolves, you can save time and money by making changes on your website that best reflect what you offer. This includes adding new images, video content or pages, as well as updating prices or text.

WordPress is a popular web publishing platform; more than a fifth of the top 10 million most popular websites are created using WordPress. One in every six websites on the World Wide Web is powered by WordPress *. If you are looking for reassurance that it can offer you what you need, then this all adds up to a good endorsement!

Below are further reasons why WordPress is ideal for small businesses:

1. WordPress is search engine friendly, making it easier for your website to be found on the Web. The structure of WordPress websites are purposely built to be easy to navigate for the end user, as well as for the web crawling robots used by Google and Bing.

2. WordPress is over 10 years old and has successfully stood the test of time. Its open-source nature has been developed and tested to make it a world-class publishing system.

3. The latest WordPress editions are responsive, so business websites are shown appropriately on PCs, laptops, mobile and tablet devices. With a responsive design , there is no need to build, optimize and maintain additional version of the same website for small screens and touch-screen devices.

4. As your business evolves, it is straightforward to extend your website functionality (for example adding a shopping cart, booking system or just a simple inquiry from). There are plugins to accomplish such tasks without the need to rebuild the whole website. Plugins are easy to install and customize.

5. The availability of high quality templates make it easier to define the initial website layout and minimize the development time required to build your website. This makes it a more affordable option for many small businesses.

6. If you need a developer to add custom features, resolve an issue or make an update to your website, there are literally thousands of developers with knowledge and experience of WordPress who could help. If you prefer to do the work yourself, you can also get valuable advice from easy to follow online tutorials.

7. To use WordPress you do not need to install any software on your computer. For a website with standard features you do not need to know HTML or have other programming skills. Adding your images, video and text is as simple as using Word, as you can copy and paste your content.

8. Once WordPress is set up and customized for your website, you can easily create new pages or edit existing content. You can easily keep your website regularly updated without being tied to the services of a web designer.

These points outline some of the reasons why WordPress is a valuable solution, especially for small business websites. So many businesses use it because it is affordable, you can create exactly what you want using their range of existing designs, features and plugins and it is easy to keep it up to date in the long term. If you have any further questions about the suitability and cost of WordPress for your business website, please get in touch.

* source : WordPress statistics – (Forbes, which is itself based on WordPress)

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Can You Be The Boss?

Do not hate the Boss. Be the Boss. Would you like to work for yourself and be your own boss? You can now start your own business without a large investment.

Online Shopping is now popular

A rapidly growing percentage of shoppers now buy online because they can conveniently shop from their own homes. It is easy to set up an online shop. Shops on the street have overhead costs such as rent, maintenance, rates, and electricity and a high set-up cost. Online shops have a continuing cost of domain name registration ($ 10 to $ 20 per year) and hosting ($ 100 to $ 200 per year). These costs are very small compared to physical shops. With an ecommerce business online you are open 24/7 for customers.

Products

First, choose a business that you can be good at. Remember the saying ” The secret of life is not to do what you like, but to like what you do .”

So choose products that you will like selling or a service that you will like providing. Learn all about the product line you choose so that when you talk to a customer you can talk as an expert.

Consumables are products that need to be replaced regularly and can provide returning customers. Examples are Office stationery, Food, Clothing, Gifts, Flowers, Jewelry, Pet supplies and any products that get used up.

Check for reliable suppliers, delivery to customers and payment options. Some suppliers can “drop ship” for you. That means you receive the customer orders but have the supplier deliver the goods direct to your customer. You do not need to hold stock.

Look at the market. Check for competitors. Is there room for another player?

Domain name

Choose a business name and register a domain name that includes key words about your business which can help Google index your website. Eg if you sell gifts use mygiftshop.com, not myshop.com or myempire.com. Do not have a name too similar to an existing one – that confuses people. If the COM version already exists do not take the NET or any other version for your domain name. Choose another name. Costs range from $ 10 to $ 20 per year.

Website design

Spend $ 2,000 to $ 5,000 on a web design? Not anymore! These days it's easy to create a website using WordPress which is free and for which there are thousands of free themes or templates. There are also thousands of free addons or “plugins” for many functions including ecommerce, advertising, surveys, newsletters, search engine optimization and many other utilities. Some WordPress themes are mobile phone responsive.

If you have any difficulty, get help from your web host, or from a web designer, but keep control of access to the hosting control panel.

There is a large range of ecommerce plugins, but they all blend seamlessly with your website. We recommend one named wocommerce that is easy to install, versatile for setting up product options like colors and sizes, has different display options, can import product details and prices from spreadsheets and has a range of delivery pricing methods and payment options.

Do not be anonymous on the internet. Display a postal address, phone number and email prominently. This assures the customer that you are in the same country.

Hosting

To accommodate an ecommerce system and products with images take a hosting plan with 200 MB space. Costs range from $ 100 to $ 200 per year. Make sure the host's servers are located in your own country to avoid communication difficulties.

Search Engine Optimization

This should be kept in mind every time you add information to your website. If your website is not on the first two pages of Google most people searching for your products will not see your website. Google ranks websites in the order of relevance to the words searched for.

To be relevant to a search, a website must contain the words searched for. Websites that have more information in their content are more relevant. Websites that have more other relevant websites linking to them are more relevant. Insert a range of alternative key words in the text. If you are selling “costume jewelry”, capture people also looking for “fashion jewellery” or similar expressions or spellings.

To get more information into the content of your website, expand the descriptions of the products, add more pages about anything relevant, eg privacy policy, returns policy and anything about the business.

Use the facilities of WordPress permalinks to make the title of each page, each category and each product a user-friendly web address. Get an SEO plugin. There are SEO merchants who will offer to charge you for some common sense procedures that you can do yourself.

Be businesslike

Be quick to answer phones and emails. Become an expert on your products. Put the website address on your emails and stationery. Use an email address @ yourdomain.com. Do not use a free email account.

Give customers the impression that they get personal service from you, even online. Put your time into your business.

Over the years we have seen many businesses start up on the kitchen table, then flourish and expand into a shop or warehouse. Success does not come all at once, so do not give up a regular job until your business is producing a regular cash flow.

Summary

Choose the right products for you. Check market, suppliers, delivery options and payment options. Choose a business name and domain name. Arrange a hosting plan with WordPress installed. Choose ecommerce and SEO plugins. Load products with expanded descriptions.

The rewards are there for those who sell the right products and are prepared to work at their own business. Be the boss!

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Quick Tips to Improve Your Small Business

Whether you are small one-man business or growing bigger than that, all business owners continuously need to look at improving the business. As we say you are always continuously trying to build a bigger better stronger ship to sail. No matter how busy you are, you should never leave your business to remain static and there is always room for improvement. Making improvements to make your business better is fun but requires you to work on your business for some time. Often the key to this is to design some time to work on the business rather than in it as we often do, working in it means just in the business servicing and taking care of normal business or trade and not improving businesses. It is also important to balance your time and put priority into the areas which you think will return the most bang for your time.

Here are some areas which we think will give your business the biggest gains.

1. Keep score, it is important to keep it simple, accurate and cheap to run scoreboard. Just as we watch sport and know the score, and play to the score, so should businesses. If this is hard for you then hire someone who can bundle up your services to include bookkeeping and regular monthly reporting so that you have the accounting information to help grow your business rather than doing what most average businesses do which is to fly blind without current financial performance indicators. A good accountant will help you spend time on a part of the business you may neglect because of your poor understanding.

2. Set goals and keep these alive through your monthly reporting process. For instance, if you wish to succeed in a certain level of sales in your financial year, break this down into a regular monthly budget. You will be surprised how this can motivate you and guide you into reaching your goal. Know where you want to head, then build it with a month by month plan.

3. Learn how to market you and your business properly. Surprisingly many effective marketing techniques are at very low cost.

4. Change your presentations. These may be your sales presentations in which you need to have a structured and successful saws presentation technique. You may want to script and improve how you handle phone enquiries, as improvements of tweaks in this area can dramatically increase your conversions and improve your sales performance and business performance. You may wish to also conduct seminars or business networking presentations which can dramatically improve your sales lead generation. Lastly you may wish to introduce yourself through social media or YouTube to explain or more distinguish yourself in the market. YouTube is a great way to answer a commonly asked question of your business.

5. Always look at your internal processes and aim to improve your efficiency and know-how. Look at using great resources such as information technology or software. As well as standardising procedures, checks and processes through the business.

6. All good businesses will grow through delegation of duties to capable staff. The business should continually look at what areas are sucking up a lot of his or her time and where possible delegating these to the staff. It is important to invest time developing staff as this activity can save an abundance of time down the track such as them teaching your future staff rather than you. As I like to say, create a monster, who can create more monsters who can handle just about everything for you.

7. Business owners are often neglecting own bodies and can get run down and sick. A business person needs an abundance of energy so they must look after their bodies and have a healthy lifestyle. Keeping yourself alive a lot longer has to be good for your business, do not you think? Try to keep this perspective through your life.

8. A great way to improve your productivity again is to take a holiday. Make that move and book your holiday, make the arrangements for it to work and build the business so that it can live without you even if it's for a short-term. Remember it's only a business where it can work without you. If you are short of a holiday idea, ask an agent or just start talking about it for ideas.

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Where Do Small Business Buyers Come From?

Before a small business begins the process of looking for a buyer for their business; they must first understand why they want to sell the business. I typically hear retirement for the main reason but I also see partner disputes, estate planning, burn out, and to many other interests. Whatever the reason a small business seller must commit to a process once that decision to sell is made.

I do not want to discuss the process of selling a business but rather discuss the types of potential business buyers that are really feeding the small local markets. These buyers have access to more information and are becoming more sophisticated in their approach to buying a business.

Below are some examples of the categories of potential business buyers:

1. Retirees – There are over ten thousand individuals retiring every day in the United States. Many of the retirees want to remain active and / or do not have the financial security to retire. They have tremendous wisdom and knowledge and are quick at understanding a business with which they have an interest.

2. Business Competitors – As a small business owner, the thought of selling your business to a competitor with which you have competed with over the years is a difficult possibility to accept. However this group is typically over looked, but may be the best possibility as expansion for them is always an option. They have the business knowledge and skills and most likely have the resources to acquire your business. The tricky part is to make sure that competitor is serious before disclosing confidential information. There are also synergistic buyers that may not be competitors but could benefit from the products and service your business may offer.

3. Family – Business owners will usually look at family members as a potential source of buyers. This may be done very early on for estate planning or later in the business life cycle as different family members express interest in working for the business. Also, extended family should be considered as a potential source. The issue with family members is that they may lack the capital to pay for the business and the conflicts that may arise for ongoing support. That separation of business and family may be difficult.

4. Key Employees – Your business is only as good as your staff and key employees. I see on many occasions key members of management may be the only option as if the business is sold to an external buyer, the key employees may not stay, making that sale difficult. Establishing clear line of communication with these group will create a better transition and potential exit strategy.

5. Money Buyers – These buyers are typically looking to buy a business strictly on some multiple net cash flow of your business. They are the most demanding, most sophisticated and are hard negotiators. Some are looking to buy a job but most are looking for a return on their investment. For this group having accurate financial records is extremely important.

It is not easy to find the right buyer for your business to create a win / win scenario. It is self-serving but I highly recommend using n experienced business broker. In the Emerald Coast of Florida, my company, South Walton Business Brokers is the leader for connecting business buyers and sellers.

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Investors and Other Capital Ideas

Webster's Dictionary defines “invest” as follows: “a transitive verb meaning to commit (money) in order to earn financial return; to make use of for future benefits or advantages; to involve or engage especially emotionally”. Each of these definitions holds true for investors; whether relating individuals, small groups or large firms. Investment Groups consist of individuals and companies wishing to pool resources for larger investment opportunities. This typically will result in higher returns and more profits for the participants. In the case of larger firms, investors are assured of a reliably safe option with quick and moderate returns. Smaller companies present a more “long-term” investment opportunity. Investors understand the smaller, less established will need more time to grow, thus resulting in an additional number of years it could take before an investor may reap the monetary benefits of the initial investment, but the potential rewards are very high.

Typically, small organizations are entrepreneurial in nature and may require monetary contributions, or capital, from outside sources to get started. In a weaker economy, traditional means of obtaining capital funds are more problematic for the new start-up company. Lending institutions tend not to invest in higher risk entities without substantive collateral to support the loan, or the rates are so high that the new company would not be able to repay the capital loan and continue to support operations. This situation becomes the proverbial “Catch 22”; without capital, a company is not able to obtain capital. The start-up owner is in need of an angel. Angel Investors do exist They are groups or individuals who are looking to promote, support and sustain smaller, unknown firms. The most prominent feature of the Angel Investor is the personal connection between the people behind the business plan, not just the potential profits. These types of investors are investing in the people more than the actual businesses. These private investors are willing to put money into an idea or product largely based upon their existing knowledge or impression of the person presenting the idea or venture; a great risk with potential large rewards and equally hefty losses.

There are a wide range of investors which include individuals, private equity firms, investment groups, lending institutions and venture capital firms. Each type of investor is essentially seeking the same end result; return and reward. However, with the passage of the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, the Venture Capital Firm was born. This legislation made it possible to form legal entities which could borrow money from the federal government at below-market rates and in turn, the entities were to invest those funds in new technologies. Whereas a private equity firm prefers to invest in established and proven businesses, the venture capital firm tend to invest in new and developing technologies. Although not all Venture Capital firms utilize this piece of legislation for fund sources, the acceptance and promotion of investing in and supporting new technologies stimulated the growth of investment firms, as well as the entrepreneurs.

The investor and the capital seeker must decide how involved in the actual operation of a potential asset company he / she would like to undertake or allow. There are many situations in which an entity would seek investment funds to expand their current market share without relinquishing ownership or stock shares to an outside party. Although capital is required to maintain and grow operations, not all entities are looking to sell part of their business for temporary liquidity. The decision for a private firm to move public will increase capital with the sales of stocks in an open market, which can be a justification of sheer necessity, or just result in natural progress within the enterprise. This move can also detract and modify the original operational scope of the company. For those businesses wanting to limit the potential loss of voting power and control, Stakeholder seeking investors would have avoided or heavily scrutinized before being considered.

Whether you are looking to invest or seeking capital, there are many options and paths to decide upon. Are you an Angel or in need of one? Will banks and lenders be in the market to loan? How much capital is enough to get your business plan up and running? Is the stock you choose the best option? With the variety of investment opportunities available in our global economy, the answers are almost limitless. Understanding the options available and the types of investors to choose from is only the first step.

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Doing Business With Family and Friends

Would you feel more satisfied with your life if you had a devoted family and great friends but had little to show in the wealth column, or if your net worth made you extremely wealthy but you were estranged from your closest relatives and colleagues or lacking genuine companionship ?

For many people, the love of family can not be equaled by any amount of riches, and as the saying goes, “Good friends are better than pocket money.” Whereas your wealth can be eroded, caring family members and true friends will remain loyal to you through both prosperity and lean times.

While having a good relationship with family and friends is priceless, do not assume that the rapport that you share with your closest companions will also carry over into the business world. On the contrary, operating an enterprise with your loved ones can sometimes be bothered with major challenges.

Can your relationship stand the test of business?

It's not unusual to hear stories of formerly loving family members being torn apart after they went into business together, or of friends who no longer speak to each other after an unsuccessful attempt at a joint venture. How could owning a business with your loved ones possibly create this personal stress?

The reality is that running a business requires fortitude and professionalism, and the tough demands may conflict with the affectionate feelings that you share with your family and friends. Let's look at some strategies that can help you manage the process of doing business with people you love.

Assess your compatibility

Before you get started on actualizing a business idea with a loved one, you need to be honest about the exercises and abilities of all parties involved. Think about the personal habits that could hinder the business, and consider how these could lead to potential problems in the future.

For example, if one party procrastinates all the time, it could affect your ability to follow through on jobs, and it may be unwisely to give the business a check book to a partner who is careless with money. Try to avoid having business relationships with people who do not measure up to your work standards.

Establish specific roles

You need to be very professional about what each party is expected to do in operating the business. Do not make assumptions about your roles and responsibilities; it is recommended that you put your expected work functions in writing so that there will be no misunderstandings in the future.

Although you will all bring valuable skills to the business, there should be only one person extremely in charge. It can be very difficult for employees if different partners make conflicting requests, so you need to determine an organizational chart that clarifies each person's level of authority.

Discuss profit-sharing

One objective of going into business with your loved ones is that you can collaborate to create wealth, so it's important to make a plan for how the business income should be shared. You should also determine if the owners should take a monthly salary or wait until the business shows profit.

There can be resentment if one party does more of the work yet receives the same amount of income as the other parties, so be certain that each role is perfectly remunerated. Also, ensure that you agree on how much money should be retained to grow the business for the future.

Use independent advisors

Although you may think that family and friends should trust each other, when you're in business, it's best to allow an accountant to keep the books and ensure that the financial transactions are above-board. In addition, hire an attorney to create fair and legal agreements for all parties.

If there are disagreements about how the business should be managed, it would be useful to engage a business advisor who can help you to determine your best strategies. If money is tight, then get an experienced friend who can objectively guide all the parties into making the right decisions.

Create an exit plan

While you hope that your business efforts will be successful, there may come a time when you need to terminate your working relationship with your loved ones. Ensure that there is an established process before you even get started that will dictate how the assets and liabilities should be shared.

If there are outstanding obligations to be met, it may be a complicated process to close the business and pay out each party. Get the help of an accountant to determine how best to liquid the entity and ensure that each party is fairly recompensed.

Even if running a business with your family and friends does not work out, remember that you shared close bonds with your loved ones prior to the venture. Refocus your relationship away from work issues and try to restore the fun and camaraderie that you enjoyed before.

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