Here’s What Financially Smart People Do

Do you consider yourself to be a financially smart person? It doesn’t matter whether you’re the owner of a business or a regular person on the street, you absolutely have to be smart with your money. This is the only way you can spend it wisely, keep as much of it as possible, and eventually become wealthy. Maybe you’re a business owner right now, but that doesn’t mean you have your life together in terms of your finances. Here’s how financially smart people handle their cash:

Wait A Few Weeks Before Buying Something

When you feel like buying something, it’s often just a whim that goes as fast as it arrived. If you don’t seriously think about the purchases you make, whether this is something to help you become a better business person or something to decorate your home, you can end up with things you don’t really want or need. Plus, much less money in the bank! You should always wait a few weeks before buying something, especially if it’s expensive. This gives you time to mull over the idea further, or even just forget about it.

Keep Track Of All Of Their Numbers

Financially smart people keep track of their numbers. You should know what’s coming in, what’s going out, how much you’re spending and on what. This is the only way you can make better choices for you individually and as a business.

Invest Their Money Rather Than Save Their Money

Smart people save, sure, but it isn’t the smartest thing to do with your money. After all, money depreciates over time. £10,000 sitting in a bank account will be worth even less later on down the line. Why not invest it instead? This is the only way you can make more money in the long run. You just have to be patient.

Credit to Fortunate Investor

Optimizing Your Online Presence For Global Expansion

Widening your net to land a much more international audience is a great way to grow your company and get your product, service or even just your brand into entirely new territories. However, it isn’t as simple as many would naively believe, especially when you consider you have to cater for all the nuances that come with an international audience: cultures, laws and online behaviors.

That is why we have come up with a few things you should consider when it comes to launching your global marketing strategy; the reason being these will help you successful cater to the new audiences you hope to reach.

Going Cross-Culture

If you want to be a success across multiple cultures then you need to understand the cultural barriers that you and your business will need to overcome. Of course, a great place to start is having a website that has been translated into multiple languages because this will give you a huge advantage. However, the deeper you are able to delve when it comes to understanding other cultures the more you will able to tweak your strategy to meet the different nuances. As such, we recommend you learn from people in the target audience you are hoping to reach.

Different Laws

Every country – and often every region – has different regulations when it comes to products, marketing, and sales. As such, it is worth making sure you know the local regulations on all three of these fronts before you commit to launching your online campaign. To give you some more context, doing business in Russia will mean different product laws to doing business in America with regards to chemicals used, safety standards, packaging designs, language used and quality assurances. The same goes for advertising laws. While America is very relaxed on competitive messaging, places like Germany and Belgium have much stricter regulations.

Search Engine Needs

Choosing the right search engine, localizing content and understanding how keywords are interpreted; these are areas you need to give careful consideration to. Every region uses different search engines, so you need to know which is used by your target audience in every location you are launching in. Yes, Google has the top spot in English-speaking countries, but local markets tend to be best served by local search engines. Another thing to bear in mind is translations. It isn’t enough to just directly translate your content; you need to localize the messaging and the product to each market you are looking at serving. And let’s not forget the importance of knowing what the native keywords to use are.

Website Design

You may think you have got the perfect website in terms of design and user functionality and, yes, that may well be the case for your American market. But it doesn’t mean it will be for the Russian market. Simple things like the colors you use can have a completely different meaning because they are so deeply ingrained in cultures. White in the western world means marriage and purity, but in the Eastern world and Africa, it symbolizes mourning. That’s just the start as well. You’re social media accounts will need to be setup to adapt to the different languages too, while most of the customer services do’s and don’t will need to be addressed as well. You’ll also need to make sure that your users see the cost of something in their local currency and you’ll want to save yourself the headache of having text that can’t be translated in your graphics.

The Employment Process: 3 Things You Need To Know

If your small business has grown during the last twelve months, you might want to employ some staff members. That is a brilliant situation because it means your company is becoming successful. Of course, the employment process isn’t always easy. There are lots of things you could get wrong if you don’t have experience. For that reason, it’s vital that you get all the advice you can find. Today, I’m going to provide you with three things every entrepreneur needs to know. With a bit of luck, this information will assist you in avoiding mistakes and wasting time. So, put it to good use during the next couple of months.

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  • There are good and bad ways to advertise a vacancy

Firstly, I wanted to talk about how some entrepreneurs promote jobs. Many company bosses make the mistake of using government-run websites. That would be a brilliant idea if there weren’t so many unemployed people. When you use government sites, you will always receive applications from candidates who are unsuitable for the job. That is because the state forces out-of-work individuals to apply for roles to get their benefits. So, do yourself a favor and avoid those websites altogether. There are plenty of niche job boards you could use to achieve better outcomes.

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  • Your interview technique is important

As you receive applications, you will create a list of candidates you want to interview. That should include no more than ten people for the best results. After all, you don’t want to spend weeks trying to find someone to fill the role. When the interviews begin, you’ll have to think long and hard about your approach. The goal is to learn as much as possible about the individual. However, you can’t do that by just looking at their CV. You need to dig a little deeper if you want to make the right decisions. Ask the candidate about their hobbies and interests, and get to know them on a personal level.

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  • Lawyers should create employment contracts

There is no getting away from the fact that you require watertight employment contracts. In most instances, you will have to pay a lawyer to create those documents. Failure to do that could mean you get something wrong and end up in trouble. The files should contain information about job descriptions, salary, and responsibilities. You can then store them all using the latest enterprise contract management software. That is the best way to ensure the contracts are kept safe, and they are always to hand. You never know when you’ll have to refer to the document during the disciplinary process.

If you consider all those points when navigating the employment process, you should find it plain sailing. At the end of the day, there are specialists you can call for assistance at every step. If your think your interview skills require some work, just research the subject online. Many blogs like this one provide excellent advice that any entrepreneur could use. Whatever happens during the next few months, I sincerely hope your company continues to grow!

Is Quality Web Hosting Important For SEO?

Businesses should never underestimate the importance of online presence for their success. But being merely present isn’t enough. Your website has to be noticed by potential customers, and in time, its popularity will surely grow, as well as the business itself. So, what else is important other than the presence? Well, quality, of course. This includes ease of navigation and an organized and visually pleasing site. Is this enough? No. Where you decide to accommodate your blog also plays a big role, especially in a world where search engine optimization is essential for every business, that is, if you want to generate traffic. Let’s see exactly how your web host impacts your SEO.

High uptime percentage

If your website is often inaccessible for a long time due to problems with the server, the search engine spiders can notice that during one of their checkup visits. They will then record it as unavailable and move on to the next site. What does that mean? Well, your web page will probably be recorded as unreliable and your rankings will go down. As a result, your website will not be ranked highly in search results, and you will lose a lot of potential visitors. A good website host should offer at least 99% uptime.

Loading speed

In 2010, Google explicitly specified speed as a ranking factor, and this is something that has been a long time coming. Users love fast websites, and low loading speed will only chase them away to another page. Too busy servers can be blamed for this situation. However, while the loading speed does, in part, depend on the web host, it is not necessarily the provider’s fault. The coding and configuration of your website can play a significant role in the total loading speed.

IP address

What’s so special about the IP address that could impact your search ranking? Well, believe it or not, it’s the physical location of your web host. In order to get higher rankings, you should choose a web host that is located in the same country as your company. IP location can impact another SEO factor – speed. Targeting the users in the same country where the host server is located will enable faster loading times.

SSL as an important SEO factor

More and more websites are using https to protect user data in web traffic. That is why Google has marked SSL as an SEO ranking factor. Although it is still a minor ranking factor and it doesn’t have too strong an influence, it looks like it will become very important in the near future. You can move your site from http to https but it will require some changes to make your website fully operational.

Security

Poor website security can really hurt your SEO. Google will not hesitate to penalize websites which are susceptible to hacker attacks, spam messages, and fake backlinks. If something like this happens, you will probably need a lot of time to identify the fraudulent page and have it removed. This gives Google time to impose the penalty. Websites that are prone to malware are also backlisted by search engines. If you choose a reliable SEO friendly host that has security technology options available, you should be able to avoid all of the mentioned problems.

Tech support

Although tech support isn’t an SEO factor per se it can play an important role in the way you manage your website and handle challenging situations. Let’s suppose your website goes down. You’re trying to get tech support on the phone and no one is answering. By the time someone finally picks up the phone, Google has already figured out your site is down which pushes it lower down the ranking list. That’s why it is imperative to find a web host that offers 24/7 support that actually works. If your website goes down, there will always be someone to react straight away.

Although a critical factor in determining your website’s SEO rankings, web hosting is often overlooked. By making an informed decision and constantly checking your hosting quality, you will help increase your search result rankings, and ensure that users enjoy the experience of your website and always come back for more.

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Guest Author is Alex Williams is a journalism graduate, and a rookie blogger trying to find my luck. Blogs are the perfect opportunity for presenting yourself to wider audience, getting the chance to showcase my expertise and receiving recognition. I am a regular contributor at Bizzmark Blog

Improve Customer Satisfaction With Better Communication

Every brand wants to make sure they are keeping their customers as happy as possible. Happy customers are more likely to purchase again in the future, and will spread good reviews to friends and family (which are very likely to turn into highly qualified leads). Better communication can go far in helping improve the relationship between a company and its target audience. Here are a few reasons you should be using SMS mass text messaging to connect with your audience.

Get Real Opinions

Mobile polls and surveys are a great way to get a few quick opinions from your customers. Simply ask your customers what they love or don’t love about your brand. The more you know, the better you can serve them in the future. People are far more likely to complete a short mobile survey than a paper form or click-through to an email survey. Keep in mind that multiple choice (over open-ended) questions are the most likely to get a response and rewards are likely to entice more of your customers to actually complete your survey.

Improve Your Speed

Establishing automatic texts can help you respond to the activity of your customers quickly. People do not want to wait on a brand to respond, but taking too long also runs the risk of losing that customer’s attention. A customer can get a speedy text response when asking a question or a notification when they sign up for a rewards program with your brand. By providing timely interactions, you will help keep your customers better informed and less hassled with the process.

Use Reminders

You want customers to stay on top of their purchases and they won’t want to forget either. SMS marketing can be incredibly helpful for keeping everyone on track and in-the-know. Use quick, scheduled reminders to help customers remember their payment dates. Collections can be one of the most stressful parts of a business, so use your text messages to keep your numbers in the black with on time payments. If you are working with smaller purchases then you can use your SMS alerts to help customers remember their carts and not let a potential purchase go abandoned.

Respect Their Time

Show your customers just how important they are by keeping your messages brief, to-the-point and as non-invasive as possible. Text messages are naturally short, so a text can be less time-consuming than an email. They are often faster and less invasive than a phone call (most of your customers will not be interested in talking to a person unless they are the ones calling you). Cold calling typically annoys people more than it actually sells.

Reduce Effort and Cost

All companies are looking to get the best return on their investment (ROI) and effort (ROE). Reduce the amount of money and time you are spending in your marketing by using mass text services. Text messages are effective, yet they are quicker to write (less content) and require no design. Text messages are not expensive and are likely to be read. The more you can reduce the effort and cost of connecting with your audience, the better you are able to personalize their experience. Plus, you can always pass your savings down to your customer with a lower price point or better rewards to increase satisfaction.

Texting will help you connect with your customer in a way that emails or mail won’t. The large majority of texts are opened, while many emails and mailers are ignored. So, use text messaging to ensure you aren’t fighting for the customer’s attention and you are keeping them in the loop.

For more information on how integrating an SMS software can improve customer satisfaction with better communication, click here!

Author Biography: Ken Rhie is the CEO of Trumpia, which earned a reputation as the most complete SMS solution including user-friendly user interface and API for mobile engagement, Smart Targeting, advanced automation, enterprise, and cross-channel features for both mass texting and landline texting use cases. Mr. Rhie holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School. He has over 30 years of experience in the software, internet, and mobile communications industries.

5 Simple Ways #SMS Can Help Grow Your Business Today!

Finding ways to engage and communicate with your audience is an easy way to naturally grow your audience and your business. A technology method such as SMS text messaging can be especially effective. 98% of all text messages are opened, while just about 20% of emails are opened. Even better, 90% of all the text messages sent are actually opened within three minutes. If you want to send your audience a quick, simple message and make sure it gets read, you can’t beat SMS.

Here are five ways SMS can help you grow your business today:

  1. Run a Contest

Perhaps the best way to build up your customer list is by offering something free. You can kill two birds with one stone by running contests via text message. Have your customers sign-up for a sweepstakes or answer a trivia question by sending a keyword to your dedicated short code. They’ll have a chance to win something and you’ll be able to send messages and be confident they’ll get opened.

  1. Send Quick Reminders

With life being so busy today, it’s a huge deal to coordinate your schedule with clients and set up appointments. If they miss a meeting; however, it can be a huge hassle to get everything rescheduled. Thats time that could have been spent with other clients or important upcoming projects.

Sending SMS messages is a great way to remind your clients about appointments so they keep them. You can send a reminder a day, an hour, or even fifteen minutes before your meeting. Best of all, everything can be automated to save you even more time.

  1. Offer Great Customer Service

Providing exceptional customer service builds your relationship with existing customers and gives them a reason to keep coming back. SMS is perfect because more than half of all U.S. consumers say they prefer text message support over other platforms. Having a two-way communication with your customers will not only give them instant answers, but also allow them to have a real conversation until the issue is resolved. Text message support is convenient, quick, and simple for both you and your customer. It also gives your customer a permanent record they can access quickly no matter where they are.

  1. Create a Loyalty Program

A loyalty program is a great way to drive retention and reward your best customers. SMS allows you to easily facilitate your loyalty program. You can send your most loyal customers exclusive deals, such as discounts or early access to new products. If you don’t want to send too many coupons, you can simply use SMS to send your loyal customers information about future events or company announcements.

  1. Drive In-Person Engagement

If you have a physical storefront or are meeting with prospects at an industry event or fair, you can use SMS text messages to engage with people nearby. Allow customers to join a drawing or answer surveys by simply texting you. If you want to send notifications or deals to people at your event, you can set up location-based filters to automatically send a message to anybody in a specific radius.

Growing a business can be tricky, but good communication helps. With the right SMS partner, you can run contests, send reminders, and drive engagement.

For more information on how integrating an SMS software can help you grow your business, click here!

Author Biography:

Ken Rhie is the CEO of Trumpia, which earned a reputation as the most complete SMS solution including user-friendly user interface and API for mobile engagement, Smart Targeting, advanced automation, enterprise, and cross-channel features for both mass texting and landline texting use cases. Mr. Rhie holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School. He has over 30 years of experience in the software, internet, and mobile communications industries.

10 Powerful Habits Every Successful Entrepreneur Should Adopt

Regardless of the niche that you want to focus your efforts on, you will face many obstacles, uncertainties and risks with your new venture. While each situation is unique, the most successful entrepreneurs often share several factors in common. For example, they may have profound experience in their industry and refined personality traits. More than that, they also usually have exceptional habits that guide them to success. These are some of the habits that you can cultivate to increase your chances of success with your next venture.

1. Pay Attention to Customers

You may think that you would need to aggressively market your products and services or refine a high-pressure sales pitch to be successful, but this is not the case. The most successful individuals are focused on improving their customers’ experiences with the company. Consider your own past experiences with different ventures. If you had a great experience, you are more likely to do business with the company again and to tell others about your experience. Successful entrepreneurs incorporate customer service into their activities because they understand this critical element.

2. Show a Positive Attitude

Whether you are drafting an email, presenting a seminar or hosting a meeting in your office, you must always communicate with others in a positive way. Regardless of how tired, unhappy or stressed you may actually be feeling, you must always present yourself positively. Learn to control your emotions so that you never yell or pout when you are unhappy with a situation.

3. Behave Respectfully

Regardless of whether you are speaking with the janitor in your office or a high-powered executive who you are trying to woo, you must always treat others with dignity and respect. The most successful entrepreneurs understand the inherent contributions that each person makes, and they know the value of these contributions. Verbal and non-verbal communication should always indicate respect, so keep that in mind.

4. Socialize with Successful People

If you want to be successful in life, you must surround yourself by successful people. When you do this, you will also surround yourself by their positive energy and can-do mentality. And before you know it, you will absorb such a mindset. They may also inspire you, offer helpful tidbits, or even support you in your endeavors. On the other hand, steer clear of people who drain your energy and detract you from your goals.

5. Don’t Be Late

Punctuality is one of the most significant non-verbal signs of respect that you can show someone. It shows that you value their time and that you understand that they have important tasks to complete throughout the day as well. More than that, when you are prompt and punctual, you prove to others that you are responsible and dependable. Some people avoid working with people who are continuously late because of how unprofessional or ill-prepared they may seem. Do not let this happen to you. Get in the habit of leaving early so that you can always arrive early or on time.

6. Constantly Set Goals

Successful entrepreneurs never settle for less. They are constantly setting new goals for themselves that push the limits in different ways. These are highly motivated individuals who strive to move forward and who are unhappy with the status quo. They may evaluate programs, analyze progress, set new goals and work daily to achieve them until those goals are accomplished and new ones can be set. Be a goal-setter and success will follow!

7. Gain New Experiences

If you want to emulate the success of top entrepreneurs, focus on exposing yourself to new things. Avoid monotony, and shake things up in both small and large ways. For example, try new meals at restaurants, rearrange your office furniture periodically, take an exotic vacation to a new destination, attend a professional seminar and more. By doing so, you can bolster creativity, meet new people, and constantly keep your mind active and inspired.

8. Commit to Lifelong Learning

Entrepreneurs do not see education as something that is attained or completed. Instead, they see it is a lifelong effort. They are always curious, and they read books, watch documentaries, or attend seminars and trade shows to learn about different things. They may also sign up for podcasts or webinars, take an online course, or download an educational app ─ today, educational technology offers almost limitless possibilities. So, remember to keep your mind open and always strive to learn more.

9. Take Care of Your Health

The most successful individuals understand that mental aptitude is linked to physical wellness, and both are necessary for success and profitability. Avoid working nonstop as this can lead to burnout and fatigue. Instead, leave plenty of time in your week for downtime, such as yoga and meditation to de-stress. Also, focus on favorite hobbies, exercise regularly and follow a healthy diet that gives you the energy and nutrients necessary for productivity.

10. Be Persistent

Perhaps one of the most important habits that entrepreneurs develop over time is persistence. While there may be a time and a place to throw in the towel knowledgeably, such as when cutting losses, entrepreneurs do not give up simply because the going gets tough. Instead, they dig down into the trenches, avoid feeling discouraged and keep their eye on the prize.

Final Words
As you can see, there is far more involved to being successful than simply getting a good degree at a top school. You also must adopt the right habits. Did you notice that the first five habits listed here are people-oriented and that the second five habits are self-oriented? Both are critical if you want to be as successful as possible in life. So, don’t waste another minute and start adopting these habits today!

 

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BIO: Helen Eagleton, a freelance blogger from Boston, follows topics in the realm of education, technology, digital marketing, and business in general. When she’s not researching for her next article, she enjoys watching documentaries and exploring the nature. Reach her @eagleton_helen