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The Truth About Documents and SMB Security
February 22, 2020
There's a major myth about "going paperless." A paperless office doesn't mean that paper is outright banned. There likely will be a need for physical paper in business for a long time, so don't throw out your printer just yet. Rather, being paperless means being able to embrace a shift from traditional paperwork processes to those that take advantage of documents that can be in a digital state.
3 Important Factors for Long-Term E-Commerce Success
February 20, 2020
You've heard all the reasons why businesses fail: lack of capital, poor product execution, or too much competition seem to be the most frequent excuses. Lately, it's become more common to hear about retail stores closing due to competition with online stores and marketplaces such as Amazon. However, what makes an e-commerce store successful in the long term?
New Windows 7 Bug a Real Turnoff
February 11, 2020
For the second time since Windows 7 reached the end of support on Jan. 14, a bug is causing trouble for users still clinging to the operating system. The first bug, related to setting a wallpaper image, turned desktops black. This new bug prevents Windows 7 users from shutting down or rebooting their computers. Microsoft's Windows 7 support now is limited to eligible paid plans.
5 Ways to Optimize B2B Customer Experiences
February 10, 2020
You just started your Software as a Service company. With hard work and dedication, you've created a solid product that solves the challenges your business-to-business customers face on a daily basis. With any new product, questions arise on how to get the most from it. Your customers want the best experience possible, and they turn to you to deliver that experience.
Uber Tests Plan to Let Drivers Set Their Own Fares
January 22, 2020
Uber has launched a pilot program in California that lets drivers in Santa Barbara, Palm Springs and Sacramento set their own fares for airport rides. Drivers can set a fare multiple on Uber's base, time, and distance rates for UberX and UberXL trips, according to the company. Drivers can increase the fare in 10 percent jumps up to five times Uber's base price.
The Million Dollar Hidden Opportunity for E-Commerce SMBs
January 18, 2020
Every successful, long-term business has a common denominator in training as it relates to online sales customer contacts. Notice I said "long-term." A great product or unique marketing effort can fall short when a customer contacts an employee who is ill-equipped to respond. Some 72 percent of online shoppers will return up to 10 percent of their purchases, according to the UPS Pulse study.
Google Snaps Up Pointy to Help Main Street Stores Get Online
January 16, 2020
Google has inked a deal to acquire 6-year-old Ireland-based firm Pointy for $163 million. Pointy provides a $900 box with built-in cellular connectivity, which lets brick-and-mortar retailers list their stock online. It plugs into the retailer's barcode scanner and automatically obtains accurate product names and images for display on a Web page hosted by Pointy.
Adobe Offers Experience Manager as Cloud Service
January 15, 2020
Adobe has announced the availability of Adobe Experience Manager as a Cloud Service for B2B and B2C companies of all sizes. The service provides "a globally scalable, agile and secure digital foundation that optimizes marketer and developer workflows across the entire content lifecycle," said Haresh Kumar, director of product marketing for Adobe Experience Manager.
4 Marketing Automation Tools for SMB Success in 2020
January 14, 2020
Marketing automation isn't a thing of the future -- it's very much a part of the here and now for small and midsized businesses across the world. However, many are unaware of a variety of marketing automation tools that can help SMBs reach customers in a timely and effective way. To compete with larger firms on customer reach, SMBs need to approach their marketing plan with a strategic mindset.
Clock Runs Out for Windows 7 Holdouts: Upgrade or Replace?
January 14, 2020
After 10 years of fully supporting Windows 7, Microsoft ended its official support for the out-of-date Windows operating system on Tuesday. The popular classic Windows 7 OS still runs on some 200 million PCs around the globe, according to industry estimates. Users include small business owners, some larger companies, and hordes of consumers holding onto aging personal computers.
Amazon Gives FedEx the Boot for Christmas
December 18, 2019
Amazon third-party sellers will not be able to ship Prime customers' orders using FedEx Ground and FedEx Home, as of Wednesday. "We have seen a drop in the delivery performance of FedEx Ground and FedEx Home ship methods for Seller Fulfilled Prime shipments," Amazon said. The restriction is temporary, although no exact date has been set for resuming FedEx Ground and FedEx Home for Prime orders.
For Some Sellers, Black Friday Was Beige
December 6, 2019
If Black Friday is the biggest sales day of the year, is it necessarily the best? For many small merchants, it seemed Black Friday was more beige than black. Black Friday is the biggest sales day of the year, but it's often dominated by massive merchants. For smaller businesses, there are other peak sales days that might be better suited to their unique positioning.
Small Etailers: It's Not Too Late to Protect Your Holiday Revenue
December 5, 2019
As consumers start to tackle their holiday shopping lists, retailers are scrambling to finish preparations for what's likely to be a record-breaking year. Total sales could break through the $1.1 trillion mark for the first time in history. Cyber Monday alone racked up an estimated $9.4 billion in sales. Most merchants understand how significant this time of year is.
SMBs Enjoy Online Surge on Small Business Saturday
December 3, 2019
While many retailers mull the takeaway from this year's Black Friday Cyber Monday shopping event, others may be more interested in the action that took place on Saturday. Online shoppers on Saturday spent $3.6 billion dollars at both large and small retailers, reflecting 18 percent year-over-year growth and setting a new sales record for the day, according to Adobe Analytics.
4 Ways Legal and Sales Can Collaborate
November 16, 2019
Sales and legal need to maintain a united front. This means being on the same page when it comes to contracting, as a significant portion of their work together is creating, negotiating and sending contracts. However, whereas legal wants to double- and triple-check that the terms are suitable, sales wants to send a contract off as soon as possible and shorten the time to closed-won.
Google to Shame Slow-Loading Websites
November 13, 2019
Google plans to use performance badges to warn users of slow-loading websites ahead. It will consider historical load latencies first, and later may expand to signal the likelihood that a page will load slowly based on the user's device and network conditions. The criteria will become increasingly stringent over time. The long-term goal is to use badging to rate qualities beyond speed.
Fresh Funds Brighten Faire Marketplace
October 31, 2019
Faire has raised $150 million in venture capital, which it will use to expand into new markets, improve the Faire marketplace, and build more tools for its customers. The latest round brings Faire's total funding to date to $266 million and gives the company a valuation of $1 billion. Faire is an online wholesale marketplace that lets retailers shop for new products to carry.
Spotlight on Cybersecurity Awareness: Own IT, Secure IT, Protect IT
September 27, 2019
Cybersecurity should be a concern for all businesses -- large and small. Cybersecurity also should be a concern for consumers, government agencies, and basically anyone who relies on the Internet in our increasingly connected world. Among efforts to focus attention on the threatscape is designating October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month.
PriceWaiter CEO Stephen Culp: 'Negotiation Has Been Around Forever Because It Works'
September 23, 2019
Fledgling e-commerce company PriceWaiter aims to save customers money, time and energy by negotiating better-than-Amazon deals on top-rated products -- simply, quickly and privately. PriceWaiter's pitch to sellers is that it can help move inventory, maintain more margin, and make MAP moot, resulting in more efficient pricing, new sales, and new customers with virtually no acquisition cost.
Engaging in Ethical E-Commerce
September 19, 2019
Gone are the days when businesses just did business. Now, it's almost expected that business values and ethics will play an enduring role in a company's identity. From the products they sell to the way they treat their employees, businesses are finding that they no longer can separate what they do from what they believe -- and customers want to know what the businesses they deal with stand for.
Zoho Is Starting to Look Like a Utility
September 12, 2019
It has been my belief for several years that our industry is trending toward the formation of an information utility. I draw this conclusion carefully based on my understanding of how markets develop and commoditize. I consider the beginning of the modern IT era as the early 1970s. You can graph a rising line of performance and a declining one for price -- essentially Moore's Law.
New Insightly Marketing Platform Modernizes Legacy CRM
September 10, 2019
Insightly has announced the availability of Insightly Marketing, which integrates marketing, sales and project management into a single platform to support dynamic customer journeys. The company also released the results of the Insightly Marketing Study it conducted last month probing trends and challenges in customer relationship management marketing.
How to Choose Shipping Software to Scale Your E-Commerce Business
September 3, 2019
Implementing shipping software can be a big step in scaling your e-commerce business -- providing a way to create shipping labels quickly, to gain access to carrier discounts, and more. With the holidays approaching, now is the time to get smart about your options. Before deciding to buy, it's important to know which features to prioritize. Label printing should be the bare minimum it can do.
3 Critical Steps to Startup Success
August 9, 2019
Startups in the U.S. fail at a rate of 90 percent largely due to cash flow problems and the lack of a market need for a product or service. In fact, not even half of startups make it to their fourth year. It's also noteworthy that 65 percent of startup owners admitted to not being fully confident about having enough money to even start their business.
How to Check the Pulse of Your Voice of the Customer Program
August 6, 2019
These days, what business isn't pushing to become more customer-centric? And for good reason --88 percent of businesses view customer experience as a competitive differentiator. A customer-centric culture is a source of long-term strategic competitive advantage. Culture is the one aspect of a business that cannot be replicated easily by the competition.
How to Overcome 5 Common E-Commerce Roadblocks
August 3, 2019
The road to e-commerce business success is hardly a straight and narrow one. Every step in a business lifecycle -- from launch and growth to scale and maturity -- is fraught with peaks, valleys, bumps, hazards and roadblocks. Your plan and reality are usually very different! I'm often reminded of this quote by Robert Kiyosaki: "Sometimes you succeed.... and other times you learn."
How to Compete With Big Retail by Optimizing Your Product Page
July 30, 2019
Congratulations! You've succeeded in driving online traffic to your product page. So why aren't customers actually clicking 'Add to Cart'? Making successful e-commerce conversions, or transforming your website's visitors into actual paying customers, isn't an easy feat. Expertise on doing it well and accurately is key to your long-term growth. This is a critical area where SMBs really struggle.
Automation: Helping SMBs Cut the Gordian Knot of Transaction Tax
July 27, 2019
Finance and accounting technology became the No. 1 software budgeting priority for small and mid-sized businesses, according to a survey conducted last year. Almost 54 percent of respondents were budgeting to invest in accounting tools in the next 12 to 24 months, with those in the retail industry specifically forecasting to spend between $30,000 and $40,000.
Understanding the IP Policy Changes Coming to Amazon Sellers
July 25, 2019
Amazon is keenly interested in protecting the IP rights of its third-party sellers because the company depends upon them for their long-term success. In a recent newsletter to shareholders, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos explained that third-party sellers currently make up a majority of the site's gross merchandise sales, with the share of revenue from third-party sellers having grown to 58 percent.
Square Opens Robotic Photo Studio for SMB Etailers
July 24, 2019
The newly launched Square Photo Studio leverages state-of-the-art robotics to offer etailers professional-grade product photography. For $10, clients can get three high-resolution, multi-angle digital photos of a product. A spinning, interactive animation of the product -- which site visitors can click and drag or zoom -- will cost $30. Clients can highlight what they want the photographs to show.
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Amazon Advertising: Strategies to Drive Success
Salesforce is a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant 2019 for Digital Commerce