How Your Small Business Can Compete with Online Retailers


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If you run a small, brick-and-mortar business, then you are probably feeling the pressure of the Big Online Store. A remarkable number of customers now prefer to buy online than go to the store. This can be great news for small businesses that do have online stores or buying apps. Unfortunately, the customers want to buy from Amazon or eBay. It’s like Wal-Mart again, but this time it’s online. On the plus side, there are certain techniques small businesses can adapt to remain competitive with giant online retailers. These changes may be a hefty investment, but if done right, your small business just might survive the Amazon craze. Here are several ways your small business can compete with online giants and retain loyal customers:

Focus on Local

An online store can focus on an international customer base. A small, local store should focus on the local customer base. Narrow down your target audience to people who are most likely to purchase from your store. Local outlets can offer customers highly desirable products that they can’t obtain from online retail giants. For example, if a local customer wants to buy a cake, he or she will have to go to a local bakery. Even small businesses that sell non-perishable goods, like clothing, can market directly to a local customer base.

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As a small business with a local address, your company has the advantage on Google local search. If a customer searches for “women’s wear” on a smartphone near your business, the mobile search results would prioritize the store nearby. Therefore, re-focus your marketing strategy and go fully local.

Invest in Mobile POS Systems

Most stores have cash register POS systems. Even small online sites have mobile payments. While both these are essential for having a comprehensive payment system that keeps the queue moving, there’s another way to improve convenience for customers. Instead of having the customers move to your cash register, take the cash register to the customer. This is what a mobile POS system does. It combines regular POS software with card reader processing hardware. When you deliver that cake to the local customer, with a mPOS system, you can get a digital payment without a hassle.

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Mobile POS systems are convenient for businesses as well as the customer. It eliminates yet another pain point from the transaction process and simplifies it. Your company can offer customer multiple payment options in addition to online payments. These systems are also becoming more affordable for small businesses, as evidenced by SumUp mPOS card readers that charge zero flat rate fees.

Offer Face-to-Face Customer Service

One thing online retailers struggle to provide customers with is face-to-face support. Customer service on sites like Amazon is highly automated. While some aspects of this are convenient for customers, it’s still largely inadequate for complex problems customers may have. This is where local stores can step in. Offer customers long-term support, particularly tech support if applicable, on products they purchase from your business. If a customer buys a smartphone, make it possible to meet up if an employee to discuss a potential issue. This is something extra that online small businesses with physical stores can provide.

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It’s not impossible for small local businesses to compete with retail giants. Follow the above suggestions, and see where it leads your business.

How Much Time Do You Give your Ecommerce Business Before You Adapt

How Much Time Do You Give your Ecommerce Business Before You Adapt

The famous American baseball player Yogi Berra once said, “It ain’t over ‘till it’s over.” This truism has found its way into the world of business and has been reinterpreted to mean that even when things get tough, it’s not over until you’ve tried everything.

If your enterprise e-commerce site is suffering from insufficient sales, you may want to rethink your strategy. But how do you know when things have finally hit an impasse? Is it possible to change things too soon?

This is an interesting question. On one hand, you want to be agile and productive; but on the other hand, hasty decisions could bury what otherwise may have been a successful venture. Below we will discuss some of the important factors leading up to this decision and what you can do to ensure a smooth transition.

Cosmetic Changes

If your e-commerce store is struggling, you might want to examine your website through the eyes of your customers. Something as simple as a clunky and cumbersome user interface could sink your sales.Take advantage of A/B testing to see features are working and which ones are holding you back.

Remember that consumers love a clean website design. Don’t try to overcrowd your homepage with flashy sales, new product offers and distracting banner advertisements. At most, you should display just one featured product or special offering on your page. And ensure that your search bar, FAQ section, ‘about us’ and contact pages are simple to find as these are vital to the success of your e-commerce site.

Marketing Makeover

If your company is starving for sales, it might behoove you to revamp your marketing strategy. Are you taking advantage of email newsletters, on-page blog posts, SEO conversions or social media marketing? If the answer is no, you are probably missing out on large audiences of interested shoppers.

While it isn’t necessary to use all these, your business should at least be employing one or two of techniques listed here. Use social media to establish two-way conversations with your customers and encourage them to share your offers with friends and family. Entice one-time buyers to regularly check out your site for new sales and offerings with an email campaign. It might take a little practice to find the right balance, but in the end, you’ll be happy with the results.

The New You

Sometimes it’s not what you are selling, but how you are selling it. An often quoted mantra in the world of marketing is that you should be selling ‘ideas, not products.’ For example, there is a lot of competition out there when selling jewelry, but if your business sells “posh accessories for the modern woman” you might have a better chance at building a dedicated fan base or finding a specific niche.

Developing a brand identity will require a little experimentation, but do your best to incorporate the same feel in all your products and promotions.

Hitting the Reset Button

However, if none of the above methods have improved your sales, it might be time to rethink your business model. Maybe the products you are selling just aren’t appealing enough to online shoppers. In this case, it is time to hit the reset button and start over.

Some enterprise e-commerce platform providers, like Shopify, make it easy to rebuild an e-store using a straightforward template. Others might prefer to build an entirely new website before closing the previous one. It’s really up to you and your business needs.

While no one likes having to rebuild the wheel, a fresh start might be just what you need. Be sure to employ the same technique above from the get-go to put your e-commerce site on the right track.

How Education Through Drawing Leads can Fuel Success



Mechanical pencils have been a universal preference by visual artists, writers and drafters who have chosen to make the switch from the standard wooden pencils. The advantages and features one gets from lead pencils are almost limitless and the best thing is that they make drawing a breeze if compared to their counterparts, the traditional pencils. Surprisingly enough, they still haven’t taken control of the world yet considering the fact that they have been around for a long time now. Actually, they originated in the 19th century in Britain. Now, the mechanical pencils originated in Europe but it was not until Japan spearheaded the advancement in the recent years to come up with much more modern thin lead pencils we use today.

The mechanical pencil basically works using the pencil leads placed in the chamber. Once the leads are inside the chamber, they are pushed to the surface through the shaft using a spin function. Depending on what mechanical pencil you use, the lead can automatically advance by spinning the tip or clicking a button usually located at the top of the lead pencil. Due to its ease of use, mechanical pencil make drawing a lot more easier and more importantly than that, the variance in fine leads sizes make the outcomes even more desirable. Below are some reasons why using lead pencils could be your way to success.

Super clean consistent lines

For a professional drawer, it is very important that all the lines are very consistent as well as clear. Nobody wants to look at blunt looking sketches really. Some of the most common lead pencil sizes go from diameters of 0.5mm to 2mm. This means that the availability of such small sizes, precise and profound lines that are thick enough to be seen and read on paper can be produced.

Not wasting time sharpening pencils

When dealing with lead pencils, one never has to sharpen their pencils ever again. Having to deal with pencils that get blunt every now and then can be quite tedious especially for people who have to draw during the better parts of their days. The best part about lead pencils is the fact that the lead is normally so thin the sharpness is always fine and this put together with the graphite pumping action, it stays that way throughout its use.

Excellent features

There is a wide and great variety of mechanical pencils that could match any wielders needs and they all come with different amazing features. To start with, the range of different lead sizes begins from 0.2mm going up to 5.6mm in diameter. This means that professional have the opportunity to choose what works best for them depending on their preferences or writing styles. In addition to the range in sizes, some mechanical pencils also come with features like auto advance lead, where the lead come out very slowly without clicking sounds. The leads are usually cushioned in order to minimize bounce making the drawings a lot more relaxed, giving the drawer comfortable grips and they also come with handy erasers just in case there are any mistakes.

Eco friendly

Apart from being full of abundant features, mechanical pencils are made of artificial materials and one only needs to purchase one pencil. There is no use of wood because once the lead is over, all you have to do is refill.

Now leads and mechanical pencils may be a boring task for the occasional entrepreneur, a field that raises no questions, that presents no interest yet little contemporary artists are a surprise and numerous big brands have successfully reported great results with the immense influence of contemporary artists.

They’re called brand influencers or trend setters today and they can swirl the whirl around with a tweet and at the same time beautify it with a sketch, they`re impressing to say the least and they can pave your brand`s way to success with simple cool drawings in a matter of seconds, all they need is a mechanical pencil and a camera to post it online.

What do you think? How do you see the online art environment today and where is your brand positioned in this world?

Microgaming Investing Into VR Technology for it’s Games

VR Technology

Microgaming investing into VR technology for it’s games is a good sign for many different reasons. Microgaming has been around since the year 1994, which more or less makes it ancient in the world of digital technology and computers. However, it is still arguably the lead casino software developer. This casino software developer would not have been able to stay in the game so successfully without creating genuinely new products all the time and without complete reinvention in some cases. Microgaming investing into VR technology for it’s games signals that Microgaming knows to jump on this new bandwagon, partly before it has really even become a bandwagon, which is often the best time.

The Royal Vegas Online Casino has been benefiting from all of the innovations of Microgaming since the beginning. The mobile casino portion of the Royal Vegas Online Casino has managed to make all the difference in the world for this website in terms of the amount of business that it has attracted over the years. It is possible that the virtual reality games of the future are going to be just as much of a success story for the Royal Vegas Online Casino. As such, it really makes a big difference for them to see Microgaming investing into VR technology for it’s games. One way or another, there is going to be an initial frenzy for the virtual reality games, just as there was an initial frenzy for the 3D technology in movies in the late 2000’s and the early 2010’s, even though the trend is starting to fade away by this point.

The online casino games at Royal Vegas casino are exciting now, and they are going to be even more exciting with the VR dimension. Many people are eagerly looking forward to developments like this, knowing that there is always room for improvement even with some of the best online casino games that people are going to be able to find today. The online casino games at Royal Vegas casino are primarily casino slot games. However, there are also quite a few table games at the Royal Vegas online casino. All of these games could potentially lend themselves well to the virtual reality technology that is being developed at present.

People might be able to appreciate the graphics from the movie themed online casino slot games in three dimensions as a result of the new VR technology, which is going to make the imagery from the movies come to life even more powerfully. People might feel as if they have entered physical casinos as a result of the new VR technology for the table games that they’re using. However, they’re not going to have to deal with the noises and other distractions that would have occurred in the physical casinos in real life. Similarly, people are not going to have to deal with distractions that would have occurred in movie theaters when they appreciate movie themed casino games using VR. VR could be one of the world’s best entertainment technologies.