8 Things Small Business Owners Need to Know About Finance

Managing Finances for A Small Business

Figuring out how to manage finances is one of the most challenging things you’ll face as a small business owner. Often, people get into the business world because they have an exciting idea or product to share. The chances are that you won’t have a lot of experience with accounts, taxes and cash flow too.

While learning as much as you can about money matters can seem like an exhausting process at first, it’s something you can’t afford to overlook when you start bringing your company to life. Knowing these 8 simple things about finance will help to keep your organization on track.

1. Sometimes You’re Going to Need a Loan

When you first launch a business, sometimes it’s tempting to try and do everything by yourself. The last thing you want is to be in debt before you’ve ever started making a profit. However, the truth is that most people simply don’t have the capital required to handle the demands of a business without a little support. A loan can be the most useful tool you have when it comes to starting your business, and even overcoming cash flow problems. Just make sure that you compare your options so you can ensure you’re getting the best interest rates.

2. Have a Billing Strategy

No matter how good you are at staying on top of things like cashflow, there’s nothing to say that your clients will be just as efficient. Most companies will have at least one customer that always seems to be late when paying their bills. Too much cash tied up in your unpaid invoices can quickly lead to cash flow problems. With that in mind, it’s important to make sure that you have a billing strategy in place. The good news is that there are tools online you can use to automatically invoice clients and send them reminders when they’re late.

3. You Need to Pay Yourself

When you’re running a small business for the first time, you might find yourself trying to put everything you earn back into the company. Any extra capital is a great way to help your business grow, but you also need to look after yourself and your family too. Remember that you’re playing an important role in your company, and you deserve to get paid for your work. Don’t focus on everyone else and forget to look after yourself.

4. You Need to Spend Money to Make It

This phrase might sound like a cliché at first, but it’s true. If you want to make real progress in any industry, then you need to be willing to invest in yourself and your business. With that in mind, make sure that you take risks from time to time, and invest in your growth. This could mean that you need to take an extra loan out at some point so you can afford to buy additional equipment, materials, or pay for staff, but a good risk analysis will help you to see if it’s worth it in the long-term.

5. You Must Remember to Look at ROI

Speaking of investing in the long-term, it’s a good idea to have a way to track your return on investments. Every time you start pouring money into projects for your business, make sure that you set up a measurement system that will show you which of your strategies are good for your future, and which might not be worth the effort.

6. You Need to Constantly Monitor Your Books

Monitoring your books might be an obvious task for financial health in your business, but it’s something that people often forget that they need to do regularly. If you’re the kind of person who might leave managing cash flow to the end of the month, try setting up an hour in your schedule each day where you can look at your incoming and outgoing expenses and make some crucial notes. The last thing you want to do is neglect your accounts.

7. It Helps to Establish Good Habits

Make sure that you do everything you can to develop good financial habits – even if it just means that you block aside some time at the end of each week to check that everything is running smoothly in your business. Running a small business often leaves you strapped for time, but your financials aren’t something you can afford to cut corners on. Start building good habits for your finances now.

8. You May Need Help

Finally, don’t expect to become a professional accountant overnight just because you’ve decided that you want to run your own business. If you don’t know anything about taxes and deductions, and you don’t have time to learn, then invest in an accountant or bookkeeper to help you. You’ll thank yourself for it in the long-term.

 

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4 Things You Need to Digitize Corporate Training

 

Corporate learning vs Higher Education

Corporate eLearning has grown by a whopping 900% over the past decade and this market is predicted to surpass $243 billion in revenues by 2022. It helps to know that digitization of corporate training is much more than just a transfer of your learning materials to the cloud. It requires the right strategy, the right tool, and the right team. If you want to transform your corporate training, get ready to embrace this trending training strategy for enterprises.

Here are four elements you need to implement for achieving successful digitization of corporate training:

1. Corporate training strategy

A proper strategy is indispensable for effective digitization of corporate training in any organization. Training strategies build the foundation for successful eLearning programs and ensure that both instructors and trainees get all the benefits out of every training. The first thing to do is to set your goals. This could be virtually anything that you want to achieve, right from higher knowledge retention rates by delivering more engaging learning materials to increasing the number of employees enrolled in the program. It is important to know that these goals do not materialize just by themselves without a clear-cut plan. You have to pay attention to several factors when you set the goals. At the start, you have to identify exactly where your business is heading towards, what are your business goals, and what do you need to achieve them. After that, you need to assess your existing workforce in terms of their skill and knowledge levels. This will help you get a precise idea of the gap between your company goals and the current level of skills and knowledge. You need to get all the job descriptions and required skills for all your employees ready before you can identify the training & development needs for each one of them.

2. LMS Software

Once you have outlined your training strategy, it is time to move forward and adopt a LMS software. Some of the fastest growing industries today such as healthcare, information technology, eCommerce, education and construction are top adopters of LMS software, which has become an essential tool in their corporate eLearning process. In layman terms, it is a software platform specifically built to disperse knowledge to employees in an engaging way. But it goes far beyond just that. LMS software is designed to track learners’ progress, engagement, and score as they take their courses online. Online training software literally transitions a classroom to the cloud and allows employees to access courses from anywhere they want. They can learn from the convenience of their homes, while on the break, or when they are commuting. Your training strategy determines the type of online learning software you should choose to meet your specific needs. For instance, if you want to enable your employees to learn on the go, you should look for a mobile-ready LMS platform. On the other hand, if you want to keep track of all the learning efforts of your employees, you may go for TinCan enabled ProProfs LMS solutions.

3. Learning & Development Team

The next thing you’ll need is a learning & development team. If you already have one, you may revisit it and see if it needs an overhaul. Don’t worry, you can do well by adding a new key player to the mix – a digital learning manager. He/she acts as the head of the corporate training digitization project and oversees the digitization of employee training. The digital learning manager’s role is vital for the success of the digitization process, and it helps to create the post in your organization if you are yet to do so. It would be a step in the right direction as it will help in implementing the right digitization strategy for your online training courses. Further, your learning & development team needs to identify your business objectives and the skill level of employees right from the start is essential to finetune your strategy and execute it. However,, most importantly, the team has to ensure the learning strategy is sustainable and help personalize the training experience to improve knowledge retention. Your learning & development team has to facilitate the digital transformation process, thereby helping your organization leverage new eLearning opportunities and achieve the training goals.

4. eLearning Community Manager

The success of any learning & development team hangs on the ability of an eLearning Community Manager to communicate the importance of online training to your employees. This person holds the responsibilities of encouraging employees to participate in online courses, and moderating the communication that takes place both on the LMS platform and elsewhere in the organization. He/she also needs to take feedback on online training and learning materials. eLearning Community Managers add to the quality of interaction for online learning and help employees adopt new learning methods in an efficient way.

Wrap Up

When they have a detailed training strategy, a versatile LMS software, a dynamic learning & development team, and eLearning Community Manager, enterprises stand to see positive results in their efforts towards digitization of corporate training. Such a well-planned and executed process tends to hand over full control to instructors to ensure they reach their training goals in a delightful manner.

 

Author Bio:- Robin is a Technical Support Executive. He is an expert in various LMS and employee training software. Currently, he is a resident learning management expert at ProProfs. In his free time, Robin enjoys cycling and sky diving.

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Tips for Saving Money on Your Taxi Insurance

Getting the best deal for your money is something we all strive for, particularly when looking for insurance. As a taxi driver, you probably encounter many claim-worthy situations in your day-to-day but, at the same time, you may never actually need to make a claim on your insurance. This presents a worry when it comes to both over-insurance. Having said that, it will pay in the long run to have comprehensive cover and protects you against a wide range of possibilities, from accidents and damage to your vehicle, to injuries suffered by both yourself as a driver and your passengers or pedestrians.

When searching for a quote or trying to find a cheaper premium for your taxi insurance, you need to think of all the steps you can take to reduce costs.
Here are a few tips you can take on board when searching for cheaper taxi insurance.

Choose a Less Risky Car

As you will know, the type of car you use as a taxi can significantly influence the cost of your insurance. Insurers calculate the costs of your insurance by working out the risks presented by each type of car. For example, cars with powerful engines that have a history of being in accidents will cost a lot more to insure than smaller-engine cars.

Therefore, if you drive a car that has less risk of being in an accident you will pay less to insure it. Although it may be unavoidable in certain circumstances (you may be assigned a particular make and model depending on the firm you work for), it pays in the long run to have a car that is less expensive and less powerful.

Have Experience & A Clean Record

Drivers with clean records will pay less for their insurance. Obviously, a clean driving record proves that you are a safe driver and unlikely to influence an accident through your driving skill. Anything from points for speeding, driving under the influence of drink or drugs, or any type of criminal conviction will have a huge impact on the price you pay for your taxi insurance.

Similarly, your age will influence the price of your premium. Those under the age of 25 will find it a lot harder to get cheap taxi insurance than other age groups. Unfortunately, the statistics show that people under 25 get into a great many more accidents and therefore present greater risk on the road. These risks are compounded further by the fact that taxi drivers are on the road a lot more than standard motorists.

Use Telematics to Prove Safety

Nowadays, there is technology that can be put in place to prove to your insurance company that you are driving safely, thereby presenting less risk. You can put a black box tracker in your car which can record information about the state of your driving, including speed, braking distance, and how quickly you take turns.

All this information presents a clear picture of your driving ability to your broker, giving them the opportunity to revise the cost if your taxi insurance premium to go in line with your risk.

Change Your Excess

Your excess refers to the amount you would have to pay out in the event of a claim. If you increase your excess then you will more than likely pay a less expensive premium, however this could end up costing you quite a lot if you do get into a situation where you need to make a claim. It might be worth looking into this, however it pays to be mindful.

Be a Named Driver

If you work for a company and drive the same vehicle every single day, it might well be worth getting named driver cover as part of your overall taxi insurance policy. If drivers are named, then the insurance companies have a very clear view of the risks of each driver and each car.

This is particularly useful if you have a good amount of no claims bonus as it means the savings can be passed back along to yourself.

Make the Move to Electric

Electric vehicles are becoming more and more popular with drivers across the world. They can benefit both the environment but also your pockets! They are generally cheaper to repair than other cars with standard fuel, they actually cost less to insure.

Although they are not as widely-used as they may be over the coming years, it could be a good idea to get ahead of the game and start driving electric.

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The Benefits of Having a Personal Loan: When Do You Need One?

 

There is nothing unlimited in this world. All things are finite, be it the material things or the ones that are more metaphysical. Because of this fact, we need to find ways on how to avoid becoming short of the things necessary to survive, grow, and thrive in this life. So save time by knowing where to go for what you need.
Not having enough of something we need to expand our life style or cause, constraints us from being more productive, and it stops us in our tracks from improving our standard of living. One of the best examples of this issue is not having enough money, or a project being under-capitalized.
We all know how limiting this feels, however, not to worry because there are personal loans that are specially designed to save the day, and your time.
In this article, we’re going to talk about the benefits of having one. We’re also going to tell you when is the perfect time for you to get a personal loan. Once you’re done reading through, you’ll find it easy to compare the best personal loans available.

 

 

Easy Application Process

One of the best things about personal loans is that they’re easy to get. They are different from other loans because the process of applying for one isn’t that complicated.

There are even some personal loans that will only take you as little as 24 hours for you to get the money. That’s how cool these loans are, making them perfect if you need to have emergency funds ASAP.

Few Documents Required

Another cool thing about personal loans is that you don’t need to present a lot of documentation. This is what makes this type of loan fairly easy to get.

Compare that to the piles of documents required in getting a car loan or a home loan. There are some personal loans that only require you to submit a few basic documents, just like your proof of income and proof of address.

This is one of the reasons why most people prefer applying for personal loans. There’s much less risk involved in the part of the lender, that’s why they don’t need a lot of documentations.

loan application in business folder showing financial investment concept

Multipurpose

Personal loans can be used for a wide variety of purposes. The money might either be used for emergency reasons such as medical and miscellaneous expenses.

Or you might need it to fund your latest home improvement endeavor. You can also use it to upgrade your car or to buy the latest gadgets.

Whichever you want, you have the freedom to spend it on whichever way you like. The flexibility of this type of loan is what makes this a perfect choice for people who need money to fund whichever project they need to spend it on.

No Collateral Needed

You don’t need to worry a lot if you’re unable to pay your personal loans. Why? It’s because there are no collateral needed.

The collateral is the asset or property that you’re going to surrender to the company if you are unable to repay the loan. In the case of personal loans, you don’t need any of those.

This makes it a very attractive choice for borrowers because there’s no risk of you losing your properties.

Shorter Loan Tenure

Compared to other types of loans, personal loans usually have a shorter amount of loan tenure time. There are personal loans which can be repaid in as fast as 12 months.

However, if you need more time to repay the loan, you can opt for the ones which have a longer tenure time. There are those that can be repaid for as long as 60 months.

The Perfect Time to Get a Personal Loan

The perfect time for you to get one is if you are avoiding risking a large or valuable asset. Remember, you don’t need to offer any collateral when applying for a personal loan.

This makes sense if you don’t have any assets to use as collateral. These personal loans also have a far smaller interest rate compared to other loans. So if you want to save up on interest, then this is what you need to get.

 

Final Thoughts

Having a personal loan is indeed the best way to borrow money. Not only do you not have to risk any property, but you also get to save money thanks to the lower interest rates. You also have total control as to when you want to pay it because you can pay them within a year or as long as 60 months.

With all of these being said, having a personal loan is indeed one of the best, if not the best way to acquire and borrow money to fund whatever endeavor or project you need to spend on.

 

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Best Email Marketing Strategies to Boost Your E-Commerce Conversions

The Personal Human Touch

Recent developments in technology have contributed to boosting up the industry vertical of e-commerce websites to a great extent. However, with extensive growth in the e-commerce business, it has been closely observed that the human touch gets missed by the users in their buying experience. Users usually do not have access to communicate with any physical entity while buying products online that restricts them with their buying choices in more than one ways.

We have seen that e-commerce drives online sales, but an online store without a proper email marketing support lacks sales enablement. Email marketing conversation keeps the e-commerce store alive and relevant for the customer. The biggest challenge that businesses face while applying email marketing strategies to accelerate their e-commerce conversions is that the control of the email communication between a brand and the customer is always in the hands of the latter. Let us look at some of the ways following which one can get over with such challenges in a smooth manner, and get maximum business benefits with e-commerce.

Choose a Catchy and Attractive Subject Line

You might have heard the term that first impressions are always the last. Imagine your users working on their desk, and an email message pops up on their smartphone featuring your best offers of the season. Putting up the same in front of them in the best and most creative way would be the key to pique their interest in focusing on your mail. Choosing a perfect subject and preview line is always crucial to creating an impactful impression over your customers. Not only that it attracts them more towards your brand, but it also strengthens their trust towards your brand offerings.

Make them Open your Mail

There are tons of promotional emails that a customer receives on a daily basis on their email accounts. It is not necessary that they are going to open each one of them. In fact, there are many emails that directly go to the spam folders to never to be explored by them. How should you manage to convince them to open your promotional mail? With an attractive subject line already in place, an effective preview text is highly crucial for grabbing their attention in the space of just a few seconds. Optimize your preview text to establish further communication with your customers make a big difference.

Lock the Attention of Your Customers

If you want your customers to act on your emails, you must have a clear strategy to increase their curiousness to catch a certain offer that you are throwing in their court. To start with, address the consumer in a personalized manner to establish an emotional link with them in the first place. In your email content, the learning quotient must have a powerful convincing and explanation power to enable them to understand the offers and drive their learning towards your brand in a crystal clear way. You can also present the content with the exact quantum of cost value to entice them towards taking definitive action.

Use Special Occasions for Your Advantage

Holidays and festivals bring with them an air of positivity and eagerness to purchase new items. Creating your email campaigns revolving around holiday season themes can make a whole of difference for your email marketing success. Research data has clearly shown that during the times of Christmas, New Year and other big occasions, big portions of sales are directly driven by the customer traffic attracted by email marketing campaigns. Incorporate this fun email marketing strategy in your emails to get instant positive results to boost up your e-commerce sales during the times of holiday seasons.

Start an email Series

Make it a fun experience for your customers from the very beginning by attracting your visitors with a series of email campaigns. As a welcome gesture, offer them lucrative discounts to build strong relations and boost your conversions. Besides highlighting your brand best features, it also works as excellent advertisement support for your brand. Make email series post-purchase including information related to shipping, and other tracking details. You can also ask your customers to put their valuable feedback once receiving their products to encourage them to stay on your website for a prolonged time and build your brand trust in them. A series focussing towards asking your customers to shop back and rewarding them to stay with your brand for a long time would further play a decisive role to boost up your sales.

Make Your Promotional emails more Personalized

Using personalization in your email marketing would be a sure shot way to enhance your e-commerce sales. However, you do not have to fake familiarization by addressing your clients with their personal nicknames. Sending bespoke content suiting the individual needs of individual customers would lead to greater traffic on your website. You can start using this strategy by segmenting your custom preferences on the basis of gender. You can also take assistance from previous interaction with your targeted customers that will make it clearer to you about their individual preferences. Analyzing the past purchased products by your customers shall also enable to create a better and compelling email framework for increasing your sales. There are better chances that the customers would likely buy any item that is similar or complementary to what they have purchased in the past.

Keep Your Call to Action Catchy

Having an impactful call to action display encourages your customers to click on the same and enter your website to further move towards making an effective purchase. Design your call to action message visibly attractive, legible and powerful. Having provided an impressive call to action is as important as detailed information related to yourbrand offerings and offers. You can use unique color scheme related to the color of your brand logo and website for the style of your email. You don’t have to make its size bigger than the other content, but the use of right color, button shape, and a catchy line would do the trick.

Redirecting the Audience to Your Website’s Landing Page

It is absolutely essential for your marketing team to put a link of your landing page in your promotional emails. No email marketing is complete without directing the audience to your landing page. Ultimately, your end goal is to enhance your online purchase that creates the necessity to put a clear direction sign for your customers to visit your main website or any important landing page with a dedicated link mentioned below it. If you are sending these emails for a special purpose or occasion, it would become easier for your audience to explore the page by putting a link for them.

Increase Click-through Rates with A/B Testing

The technology related to A/B testing refers to creating more than one title for the subject line of your email. Analyze your conversion rates with the emails and understand which of the emails scored better than others for increasing your sales. In order to achieve positive results out of this, you must send several emails and observe how many customers subscribed to your services after reading which of these emails. To achieve better clarity over the concept, hire an expert digital marketing company with SEO experts to incorporate this attractive technique in your email marketing in a better way.

The Power of a Thank You email

Your work doesn’t end with selling your products to the customers. They have spent their hard-earned saving on your items that need to be acknowledged to establish a lasting relationship with them. You can do so with a thank you mail to individual customers listing the items that they purchased along with links of related items, additional offers, any special offers on the items of similar genre. You can also ask them to review your products after a while to remind them about the special offers that have been running on your website at the current moment.

Remind the Customers to Finalize their Purchases

There are times that customers add their items in the cart but forget to purchase due to different personal reasons. Send them a reminder mail to make the purchases, and the chances that they are going to perform the action become better. Make the email attractive by posting the items to-be-purchased in your email that would invariably lead them to complete the final step of making the purchase.

At the end of it, it all comes down to the knowledge that with the recurring developments in technology, man is turning into machine, and machine is turning into a man. With a great amount of work performed by the machines, a lack of human interface is quite visible when it comes to e-commerce business interactions. Humanizing e-commerce through great content-driven email marketing campaigns would give a definite boost to your lead conversions over your e-commerce websites.

Author bio:

Being a senior business associate, Peter Davidson strives to help different brands and startups to make effective business decisions and plan effective business strategies. With years of rich domain expertise, he loves to share his views on the latest technologies and applications through his well-researched content pieces. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.


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Digital Branding: How it Can Help Your Business

Advantages of Digital Branding

One of the fastest ways entrepreneurs can grow their business is to utilize online and digital mediums. Search engine, blog or content, social media, video, audio, etc., are some of the tools that can help you promote your business effectively and give you the visibility you need to improve your bottom line.

What Really is Digital Branding?

Digital branding is a modern marketing strategy that is adopted by businesses to woo customers online. It includes the use of online marketing techniques such as search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, social media channels, paid digital advertising, etc.

Digital branding is the bedrock of modern marketing. It gives organizations a broader reach regarding being read and seen by the mass public in different parts of the world, enabling businesses to build a digitally visible presence.

How Digital Branding Can Help Your Business

Digital branding is a savvy business strategy which when used correctly, can improve your business and help you to stay a step ahead of the competition. Here’s how:

  • Digital branding gives you an avenue to build customer loyalty and take advantage of opportunities: Digital branding provides organizations with a powerful technique to better connect with their target audiences, follow market trends, as well as respond to market needs. Engaging your target audiences enables you to build customer loyalty and drive client demand.
  • Reach more people: The advent of the internet means that you can use multiple online platforms such as social media sites, advertisements, chat sites, etc., to expand your audience reach.
  • Personalization: By permitting you to connect with consumers via multiple channels, digital branding gives you an opportunity to listen to client needs, emotions, wants, and personalities. Having all these information enables you to adapt the customer experience to customers’ specific needs. This improves the customer experience and makes your customers feel special, building customer loyalty as a result.
  • Higher conversion rates: Convenience is one of the best ways to make consumers love your organization. Search engine optimization can help give you better positioning in search engines. The higher up the rank you are, the greater your visibility, and the higher your conversion rates, as ranking top enables you to achieve higher click-throughs. Higher conversion rates ultimately result in increased revenues. Other acts that can help boost your conversion rates include creating a blog, allowing product reviews, or opening a forum.
  • Cost-effective: The cost of digital branding is considerably cheaper than traditional marketing techniques.

Business Exposure

All businesses need exposure; digital branding exposes you to the right kind – a global audience. This means a significant opportunity to become popular, sell your product or service, and create opportunities for your business to perform.

 

 

 

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How to improve your personal finances using a checklist

Personal Finance Checklist

Revamping your entire financial plan may seem like a gigantic task, so it’s easy to become overwhelmed. But by breaking your fiscal dreams into smaller, more manageable goals you’ll be setting yourself up for success while gaining some confidence about your money-making decisions with each item you cross off. Making a checklist can by the key to getting your money – and long-term goals – in order. Here are a few examples of simple changes that can make a major impact.

Start small.

One of the biggest mistakes people make when they’re trying to make a substantial change in their life is focusing on objectives that aren’t easily attainable. This is an easy way to sabotage yourself, because the task seems so large you can’t possibly reach it. Think about restructuring your budget in the same way you would expect to start a diet or exercise plan. You wouldn’t expect to be able to run marathons within the first couple of weeks, so why would you hold your finances to a similar standard? Like with most goals, the little things add up. Instead of backlogging every purchase you’ve made in the last six months, start today by tracking all of your extra expenses such as movie nights, eating out, and entertainment-related costs like cable TV or your Netflix subscription. No detail is too small when it comes to money management and financial stability.

Streamline your payments.

Consolidating or organizing all of your bill payments is another simple task to add to your checklist. Determine the bills that you pay regularly, their frequency, amount, and whether or not they can be paid online. If possible, set up all bill payments to withdraw from your bank account automatically and keep track of your email or online confirmations. This can usually be done either through the servicer or your bank. By automating the process, you’ll reduce the amount of time you spend each month gathering paperwork and information. You’ll also simplify your own record keeping, since you should be able to locate most of your payments with just the click of your mouse. Even better, you won’t have to worry about accruing late fees since you know exactly when your account will be debited for each bill cycle.

Pay yourself first.

Having a comfortable savings account is one of the most important steps towards financial security. As part of your monthly, bi-weekly, or even quarterly checklist, send a portion of your paycheck to your savings account each time you get paid. Depending on your personal goals, income, and expenses this amount may vary. However, don’t underestimate how quickly even $10 or $20 per paycheck can add up over time. If possible, set up an automatic deposit so you’ll get used to receiving a lower amount. This is one line item that will give you a bit of satisfaction every time you check it off your list.

Keep your budget balanced.

Keeping your overall budget in order is usually one of the most daunting tasks, but breaking it up into smaller sections will make it a breeze to get through. Make a list of all income sources, everything you spend money on regularly, and for at least one month track all of your expenses to get an idea of how much you should allot for miscellaneous spending. Once you have your list, break the expenses into categories such as utilities, travel, housing, food, insurance, loan payments, and childcare. Your static expenses are those that are consistent for every pay period, and your flexible expenses are the less predictable ones such as car repairs or additional medical costs. Based on what you typically spend per month, you should be able to outline how much is needed to put towards extra expenses on top of your static ones. Being able to check off when each of these obligations are met will give you some peace of mind, and you won’t have to second guess whether you paid that bill or not.

Money Management for Retirement.

Money management is a huge part of most of our lives, and many of us have areas that we’d like to improve. Whether you’re saving for a dream vacation, college, or retirement, keeping track of your goals and when they are met is a valuable tool that you can use for all of your financial plans – no matter how big or small.

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Customer Loyalty Programs Start Using Artificial Processes and Strategies!

Increasing Customer Loyalty

Everyone knows that increasing customer loyalty is all about making bigger profits, creating a group of raving followers and finding customers at a faster and cheaper price. In the long run, customer loyalty can do wonders to your business. However, there are many questions and debates on how to ensure customer loyalty! Can your customer support knowledge base help you understand what customers really need? Can you use knowledge base support software to judge the requirements of customers online? Is it possible to use artificial intelligence to understand and improve customer loyalty?

According to experts, the answers to these questions is a big yes! Yes, you can go beyond manual, traditional methods and use software programs and artificial intelligence to boost customer loyalty.

Understanding Artificial Processes in Customer Loyalty Programs

Few months ago, Joseph Nunes and Xavler Drez made news. The whole world learnt more about their customer loyalty adventures. This duo experimented a new type of customer loyalty program at a local car servicing center. The consumer researchers rewarded 300 customers at the car wash with loyalty cards. Half of these loyalty cards expected customers to make eight transactions before winning a free service or car wash. The rest, needed ten transactions. However, there was a small twist to the story. The company offered two free bonus car washes as a head start. This means, their business began with free services.

In both these situations, potential customers had to make eight transactions for a free service. But, there is a small amount of difference in how complete the offers are. In offer one, the customers were zero-percent complete. On the other hand, offer two ensured 20-percent of completeness.

Now, you might wonder if the customer support knowledge base and this “Artificial” progress would ensure customer loyalty in return.

In the next few months, the duo noticed that 1/5th of the customers opted for the first offer. And, ½ of the customers chose the second option. This clearly proves an increase of 80% in terms of customer loyalty. Indeed, artificial progress has helped the car wash enjoy a better level of customer loyalty.

If you are planning to venture into customer loyalty, you must invest some time and effort on artificial progress. This is a smart way of introducing your business to new customers. Meanwhile, it is a strategic way of helping customers continue your products and services. The time required to witness the impact of artificial progress may appear long, yet it is worth your time and effort.

What is Customer Loyalty?

Before you start focusing on your customer support knowledge base and invest on knowledge base software, you must have a clear understanding of what customer loyalty is all about.

Let’s understand this with two real-time scenarios:
  • If you are an author, customer loyalty for you is represented by the number of people reading your books. For instance, if someone buys all your three books, they can be treated as a 100% loyal customer. And, if someone chooses to read only your book only once, they are less likely to return.
  • If you are a designer or a consultant, customer loyalty is identified by the number of people asking for your services. If people keep requesting for your services, you are on high demand! For example, if I approach the same designer for all my needs that is 100% customer loyalty.

If you want your business to endow and enjoy the benefits of customer loyalty, you must stick to a structured process. Here are three steps you must follow as a part of improving customer loyalty over the internet and using artificial intelligence to give it a boost further.

Step #1 – You need to have a well-established Goal

First of all, you must appreciate the fact that artificial progress can help you. Don’t think twice to make use of endowed progress. After all, every business needs customers and goals to focus on. You might be venturing into an eBook, design service or hourly consultation, the business doesn’t really matter. Artificial progress can help you. When paired with knowledge base software, it turns into a power tool for any business.

Step #2 – Understand What your Customers Need

Everyone knows that customers are longing for efficient and effective services. However, loyalty goes beyond these elements. Today, you must educate customers on what has to be done for better servicing and products. Companies must be specific about behaviors and actions that can be rewarded. Why would you reward your customers and keep them loyal? Do you intend to reward all your customers? Or, do you wish to reward customers who refer and advertise your business? Or, do you wish to reward customers who have stayed with your business for a long time? It is important to decide what your loyal customers must have done or do.

This is when knowledge base software programs become useful. These software programs will help you keep track of customers. You will be able to monitor every customer individually. In the long run, you will have plenty of data about your customers, what they want and what they have done to become loyal. The best way to exploit any artificial or endowed progress is through knowledge-based support systems.

Step #3 – A Head Start

Remember the car wash case study? It would be wise to give your customers a head start. This will be a bonus that adds more value to your business.

But, you must not give a head start without valid reasons. Always stick to limited bonuses. This route works well when you have to launch a new service or product. The limited time bonus will create a hype and keep your customers geared.

Step #4 – FAQ is Must

Your customers tend to come across various difficulties that can be answered easily. But to cater their questions, it is advised to create a FAQ page that gets most of them covered easily. Not only will your customers get to receive the answers on time but also reduces the workload from your support department.

These FAQs can also be linked to well curated tutorials that aid your customers in times of needs. This will boost their loyalty towards your brand and will be more willing to spread the word.

Step #5 – Expert Support Team at Place

A skilled team of customer support agents can help you boost the loyalty factor. But make sure that they are well-trained about your product or service that helps them answer any technical questions. In case you plan on training them or think of developing an ongoing training program, then a knowledge base software can come to your rescue.

It can help you develop a training program for your support agents that they can access anytime, anywhere. As they get equipped with the online program, it’ll be easier to get all customer queries resolved in no time. Hence, increasing the existing customer loyalty rate towards your brand easily.

Step #6 – Multiple Channel Availability

If you wish to help your customers reach you at anytime, from anywhere, then it’s important that they find you available at all times. This is also possible if you work towards building a stronger presence across multiple channels. Reason is simple. Your customers would not necessarily try to get in touch with you with emails or calls.

They’d also prefer if you make yourself visible on various platforms, so that their options aren’t limited to just one or two. No matter what business you own, building a stronger visibility across multi-channels is important. This helps you satisfy your customers in the shortest span of time possible.

What’s great is you not only get to retain customers with prompt responses, but also build a strong relationship with your customers easily. This leads to expanding your customer loyalty further because your organization is taking the effort to reach out to them in time. A great way to build positive points amidst customers.

The Verdict

Dan Pink once told, “There is a big difference in what science knows and what businesses really do”. If you want to improve customer loyalty, go ahead and use endowed progress (or artificial progress). This is a tool that can keep customers attached to your business for a very long time.

After all, it helps you know their expectations from your brand when they plan to invest in your services or products. This can be done successfully by

 

  1. Monitoring every single customer and the decisions they take while browsing through your website.
  2. Giving them a great head start with valid reasons, so they can stick around with your brand for in the long run.
  3. Making yourself available at anytime, anywhere by increasing your presence on various platforms.
  4. Building a stronger support team that helps your customers get all the answers they seek when in trouble.
  5. Creating detailed FAQ with the help of a knowledge base software. These can help your customers find instant answers to their queries hassle-free.

 

So, do not get worked up on how to get your customers more loyal towards your brand, when the integration of such software can help you resolve the issue successfully.

 

Author Bio:-Robin is a Technical Support Executive. He is an expert in knowledge management and various Knowledge base tools. Currently, he is a resident knowledge management expert at ProProfs. In his free time, Robin enjoys cycling and sky diving.

 

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A Budget Business: Online Ventures to Start with Zero Money

Is an OnLine Internet Business For You

Unlike with a bricks and mortar store, an internet business doesn’t necessarily require a substantial amount of capital for you to get started. If you have a computer, a hard work ethic and a good online business idea, you could soon be making a superb annual revenue. If, however, you are stuck for ideas and are looking for a light bulb moment, here are some online ventures to start with zero money.

Drop Shipping

The beauty of drop shipping is you don’t need to have cash in the bank to sell high-quality products to your customers.

For example, you will not need to purchase a large inventory of products, as you will only buy an item from a wholesaler when a customer places an order on your website.

Plus, as they will keep the products in their warehouse and will process a delivery to a customer, this can reduce your overheads even further.

You will, however, need to find the right product to sell on your website to make a great profit.

For example, if you want to develop an e-commerce clothing brand, you should find reputable t-shirts, trousers and hoodies suppliers, which could cater to consumer demand.

 

Digital Information Products

An internet business also allows you to sell digital products, which should provide your customers with value for money. As you’ll have no physical products to sell, you will not need to worry about manufacturing, warehousing or distribution.

You can, therefore, create information products for free, which you can then sell for a fixed price to a customer.

Some of the most popular digital information products include:
  • eBooks
  • Travel guides
  • A recorded webinar
  • Videos
  • An audio interview
  • Instructional booklet

It is, however, essential to make sure the digital product is both engaging and useful to generate a sizable amount of sales.

An Online Consulting Business

If you have extensive experience in a field and believe you have considerable knowledge you can pass on to others, an online consulting business could be an ideal option.

It is easy to get started, as you will need to set-up a website, identify a target market, set consultancy rates, and start networking in your industry to attract clients.

It can be a rewarding online venture, as it will enable you to earn a living while passing on your expert knowledge to other professionals, which can help them to excel in their chosen field.

Video Monetization

There are many online video publishing websites that allow you to monetize your videos, such as YouTube. If you can produce high-quality, informative, or entertaining videos on your smartphone or computer, you could earn a substantial profit.

Profitable YouTube video ideas can include:

  • How to videos
  • Cooking videos
  • Gadget reviews
  • Book reviews
  • Online tutorials
  • Blogger interviews
  • Fitness videos
To start monetizing your videos, you will need to link your channel to Google AdSense, and you’ll make 68% of the ad revenue. If a user watches 30 seconds or more of an advertisement, you’ll receive around $0.18 for the view, which can amount to a hefty sum over time.

 

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5 Obvious Mistakes That You Must Avoid to Make SEO Efforts Effective

Digital Marketing and the Importance of SEO

In today’s digital age, every business strives to gain competitive advantage through digital marketing. SEO is an instrumental factor in expanding the digital marketing landscape. It aims at increasing the visibility of a website on a search engine.

However, the expansion of digital marketing also has certain drawbacks. The search marketers need to identify certain essential points to remember before conducting SEOs. The significant areas of focus for are the constant algorithm updates posted by search engines. For instance, Google has various algorithms for compliance, like Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird, etc. explained later in points below. Apart from algorithms, there also has been an entry of many fake websites in digital marketing providing misinformation which need to be checked. Following are five obvious SEO mistakes that you can avoid in your digital marketing blogs:-

1) Avoid stuffing of keywords

We all know that keyword management is the core of SEO process. Achieving Keyword optimisation is every search marketer’s dream. For that, there are many different technological solutions based on machine learning. These solutions also improve the ranking of a website on the search engine’s search results. However, many times in a quest to achieve a higher rank in search results, search marketers overuse certain keywords. They repeatedly use the keywords thinking that maximum search traffic can be attracted to their websites.

But you should strictly avoid this, as certain search engines have officially forbidden keyword stuffing through their algorithm updates. For instance, the “Hummingbird” algorithm update of Google on 22nd Aug 2013 strictly forbids the overuse of keywords. Thus, this is one miniscule SEO mistake you can avoid on your blogs.

2) Prevent irrelevant, spam links and broken links on your SEO website

At times, SEO websites itself have many spam links or irrelevant links which distract the customers. This might discourage a lot of search traffic for your website and will also affect your search result rankings. Also, search engine algorithms will impose some penalty on your website if the links are spam or irrelevant. For instance, the “Penguin” algorithm update by Google on 24th April 2014 forbids spam and irrelevant links on an SEO website. As a result, instead of positive digital marketing, it might lead to negative impact on the image of your site.

To avoid this, you can use backlink checker tools which continuously conduct a comparative check of your website’s links with the search engine’s algorithm updates to ensure that there’s no violation.

Broken links are incomplete links which lead your customers nowhere and negatively affect your website. You can easily prevent broken links on your site by simple careful monitoring

3) Avoid Plagiarism and Duplication in your website’s content

Among the significant problems in Digital Marketing are plagiarism and duplication of content. There has been a considerable amount of copying and duplication of content by fraudulent websites from the original content of authentic sites. Copy pasting or plagiarism discourages the digital marketing industry. While duplication can also be unintentional, but it still affects the websites. There have been algorithm updates of certain search engines over this issue.

For instance, on 24th Feb 2011 Google introduced “Panda” update to check plagiarism and duplication. So if you conduct digital marketing on Google, make sure you avoid plagiarism and duplication. You can approach the services offered by Joel House Search Media Brisbane. They will make sure to provide you with the best possible services at the minimum possible prices.

4) Avoid thin content and advertise-oriented content

Most of the times SEO websites, to make quick and easy money, resort to posting heavily ad-centric content which lacks appropriate quality. As a result, such thin content does not help the online customers at all. This, in turn, will divert all the search traffic from your website. Recently Google introduced an algorithm update named “Fred”, on 8th March 2017 which strictly forbids heavy advertise and low quality in SEO content. Thus, you must ensure that your website provides quality and relevant content with minimum ad-traffic.

5) Improve your website’s Mobile usability & create a mobile version of your site

Many businesses which indulge in digital marketing only have a desktop site. And as you know that today most of the customers conduct their online searches on their mobile phones, they may be discouraged from visiting a desktop-only site. In fact, Google also had introduced an algorithm update named “Mobile”, on 21st April 2015, making it mandatory for SEO websites to have a mobile version of their sites to improve their mobile usability. So you must make sure that you create a mobile version of your website.

Conclusion

Digital marketing is a big ocean of marketing opportunities with the help of SEO. But certain points need to be taken care of such as search engine algorithm updates and misinformation. The algorithm updates like Penguin, Panda, Fred, etc. aim at checking content related factors like plagiarism, spam links, etc. So make sure that you comply with all these algorithms and avoid mistakes on your SEO blogs.

 

Author Bio: Christopher Jones is a serial entrepreneur, an angel investor and also a founder and former CEO of a digital marketing agency. He also has been an author of a best-selling book on SEO management. In this post, he has mentioned about the common problems that we can see in blogs as well as how it can be avoided for betterment. He has also mentioned about Joel House Search Media Brisbane services here.

 

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