Sep 18 2013

Workers’ Comp Agency Recommends 4.4% Rate Increase

Published by under Business

workers comp
The agency that helps set workers’ comp rates is recommending they increase 4.4% at the start of next year. The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau in early August recommended that the average benchmark pure premium rates for all of the state’s class codes in-crease to $2.62 per $100 of payroll for policies incepting on or after Jan. 1, 2014.

A good portion of the rate increase is due to increased claims filings, as well as rises in medical costs and permanent disability benefits that partly took effect this year and take full effect in 2014.

This year, benefit increases added an-other $620 million in system costs, the Rating Bureau has estimated. In 2014, the increases will add another $590 million in costs for all workers’ comp payers in the state.

That said, cost increases are expected to be offset by savings from reforms contained in SB 863, which was signed into law in 2012 and took effect at the start of this year. Continue Reading »

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Jul 30 2012

How to become a sucessful business analyst

Published by under Business

Become a successful business analyst, ho to Become a successful business analyst http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/?p=11

The position of Business Analyst seems to have attained swift prominence with modern day companies that are re-engineering their own operations and embedding IT systems at the center of these business.

Professional organizations like the BCS and the IIBA have tailored internationally accepted business analysis training and certification schemes.

The role has now been refined from that of the old-school Systems Analyst from the Nineteen eighties – and as a result continues to progress. Pretty much when Business Analysis appeared to have now evolved into a suitably outlined and more mainstream management style, the use of Agile development and project management software processes is definitely forming fresh opportunities. Continue Reading »

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Jul 20 2012

10 Things You Should Do When Opening A New Business

Published by under Business

Article by Chris Davodi of 1 Stop Service Business Resources.

Grand Opening, Opening a new business tips http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/10-things-you-should-do-when-opening-a-new-business/

Amongst the million businesses that open up every year, some make it past their first year and churn profits while others fail in not being able to generate a profit. Perhaps it might be things that are out of your control like the state of the market or even the economy, in general.

While there is a possibility that you might not succeed due to these factors, you can probably increase your chances by making a checklist of tasks that you should complete when you open a new business.

Here are some vital tasks that can help you succeed, or help you survive when things get rough:

#1: In determining whether the business will suit your life’s goals or not, you can proceed to create a business and marketing plan while also using the break-even analysis to determine whether or not the business will succeed before jumping headlong.

#2: Finding a legal structure for your business is paramount, and this means understanding which ownership structure will suit your business, and perhaps, a lawyer will be able to help you streamline your efforts.

#3: Get a good name for your business and make sure you have the paperwork in place.

#4: It is important to find an appropriate business location so that it will stand more chances for success in its first year.

#5: Obtaining Insurance, filing for permits and licenses while also setting tax reporting and accounting are also important tasks.

 

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Jul 05 2012

Content Writing Tips For Your Website

Published by under Marketing

Article by Pierre Zarokian of iClimber.

Content Writing Tips, Content writing tips --> http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/?p=32

One of the best things that business owners can do these days is to promote their business over the internet through social media and in particular, a website. To say the least, it opens up your products or services to a global audience, and that can mean more profitability and potential customers for your business.

However, it’s not just about making any website but one that will catch the fancy of your potential customers, and there are certain aspects of content (and writing it) that you must keep in mind in order to drive traffic to your website.

So here is a list of content writing tips that will help you enjoy a successful business that you can generate through your website:

#1: Keywords, keywords, keywords

With people looking for information regarding certain products or services by the means of search engines and entering certain keywords, you’d be smart if you incorporated those particular keywords (pertaining to your business) in the content on your website. Focus on using one keyword per web page.

#2: Striking a chord with your readers

Remember that you aren’t writing for search engine but humans so you should ensure that you use emotional language when talking about your product or service so that you are able to strike a chord with your readers, and which will cause them to show interest in buying what you have on offer.

#3: Write like you are talking

As most people would have learnt in college or school to write as if you are preparing a dissertation for your Ph.D, using this approach for the internet is not a WISE. Write as if you are talking to a friend – someone who is a curious acquaintance and wants to know more about your product.

If you are interested in professional content writing services, visit www.iClimber.com website. In addition, you may want to read more tips at the iClimber Social Media Marketing Blog.

If you are interested in professional content writing services, visit www.iClimber.com website. In addition, you may want to read more tips at the iClimber Social Media Marketing Blog

 

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Jun 03 2012

How To Avoid And Fight Charge Backs

Published by under Business

Article by Kristin Gabrieli of Total Merchants.
Credit Cards, read more about credit cards at http://www.thegreatamericansmallbusinesschallenge.com/

Charge backs are a reality that every online merchant has to deal with, and there are several reasons why this happens, one being potential fraud, but the person who has to deal with loss is the merchant as soon as the customer asks for a refund from their bank.

This is why it is so important for merchants to be careful of getting into situations where charge backs are imminent, and so here is a list of tips that will help you avoid charge backs right from the outset: Continue Reading »

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Apr 16 2014

Essential Services for Your Construction Business

Published by under Business Services,Legal

Written by

If you own a construction company, you might be in need of a few services outside of your expertise. Construction companies often face unique situations, from being sued by a customer to dealing with a crisis that requires immediate action. As a business owner, it’s important to be prepared with an arsenal of tools to help you get through any issue. The problem is that not all managers or business owners have the experience and education to handle issues outside of their business. How do you handle legal issues? How to deal with a PR crisis? What happens when you’re involved in a huge dispute with a customer?

Whether you’re going through issues at this moment or would like to be prepared for any problems down the road, there are ways you can avoid falling into a deeper trouble. Here are a few business services you should always have handy for your construction business.

Expert Opinion

There might come a time when you’re called into court. Whether you’re being sued by a customer or another company, you will need an expert witness on your side. When it comes to the construction business, you will need to find an experienced witness, such as a steel fabrication expert. The expert must have knowledge and experience with the topic at hand. The key to finding the right witness is to plan ahead. Do your research. Find an expert witness and keep their information for emergency situations. You don’t want to be scrambling to find someone when you’re called into court.

Crisis Management

It happens to the best of us. Your company might fall into a serious crisis that requires immediate attention. Without proper action, however, the issue can ruin your reputation and your business. Fortunately there are many crisis management companies that deal with this type of issue. The problem is finding one with experience in the construction industry. The good news is it is possible. The best way to avoid a major problem is to plan ahead. Find a crisis management firm with experience in the construction industry and keep them at close range.

Construction Claim Analysis and Preparation

Another area of your business that might be overwhelming for the business owner is claim analysis and preparation. While basic analysis and preparation might be fairly easy, the hard part is dealing with scope changes, RFI issues, down time, and other challenges. To avoid errors associated with documentation, it’s best to have a professional construction claim preparation company handle the work for you. With the right company on your side, they will properly prepare, analyze, and settle all of your claims in a timely manner.
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Lyle Charles Consulting, Inc. offers construction consulting services, including expert opinions, claims analysis, mediation, and business consulting.

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Apr 11 2014

Banner Advertising Design Tips

Published by under Business

This article was written by Ted Dhanik

Without good design, all of your messaging and sales pitches are as good as dead in the water. Good design can help enhance your messages, making your text stand out or creating an effective image that sets the mood for the customer. Images and colors can be extremely powerful tools, but you have to understand at least some of the basic principles behind design in order to use them effectively. With these tips, even the most inexperienced marketer can design strong banner advertising that converts visitors to customers.

Colors

Some color theory will come in handy when you’re designing a banner to display. It’s important to know contrasting colors, as well as complimentary ones. Black and Yellow are a good combination, but you can try others like blue and white or green and white a. The text should always contrast the background of the banner so it does not clash, and the user finds it easy to read. In general, a lighter colored background will require darker text, and vise versa.


 

Text to Image

For an ad to receive a click, it must be perceived as adding value to the user. It’s important to identify what your customer wants to see. Are you making the offer desirable? Does the text in your ad point to some exclusivity, or some other factor that motivates the user to follow through on your call to action? Are you relying on brands and other factors to reinforce trust with the user? Remember, you’re about to ask for extremely personal information or possibly even a credit card. It’s important that you establish your intentions up front in a method the user finds non-threatening. To do this, you need to employ some common tricks in copywriting. Use only the most important words to get your point across, and avoid cluttering the banner with a wordy sales pitch. Try to truncate what you’re saying, then let your landing page do the heavy lifting.

Sizes

If you don’t pay attention to acceptable sizes for a banner ad, there is a chance your user might not even see it in the first place. Most display advertising networks will tell you either over the phone or on the website which sizes they work with. You may have a selection between a few sizes, or you me be confined to one. Pay attention to those requirements so that your entire ad displays, otherwise you’re paying for impressions of an ad that no one can see.

Bio: Ted Dhanik is a sales and direct marketing professional. From his time with MySpace, Ted Dhanik learned both on and offline methods for launching a Web business. For direct marketing advice, seek out Ted Dhanik.

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Apr 09 2014

Recommended Cleaning Procedures for Pedicure Chairs and Massage Tables

Published by under Business Services

Giving your customers a clean environment for a massage or pedicure is important for business. It gives your reputation a boost, and clients will feel better about coming for a repeat visit if they know your facilities are clean. In addition, there are health standards you must conform to for legal and safety purposes as well. You may find yourself buying a fancy kit to clean these instruments, but there are methods using household cleaners as well. Here are some tips for keeping your massage parlor, including pedicure chairs, clean and germ-free.

Massage Table Cleaning

It’s important to set up massage tables as though you would be servicing a client, and inspect them for sturdiness. Check all of the components of the table, including all joints and screws on the legs. You will need a non-abrasive cleaner. You can use dish soap for his purpose, but citrus will work just as well and it’s eco-friendlier. Spray this on the surface of the table, and wipe it down with a clean rag. Paper towels may also be more sanitary, since they are disposable and less likely to have bacteria on them from previous use.

Allow the table time to air dry when you’re finished, then repeat the cleaning process as needed. You should use a cleanser like Lysol if you service any clients that have open sores on their bodies.

Pedicure Chair Cleaning

Before using a pedicure chair, it’s important that you inspect the client’s feet. Avoid using the open bath with clients that have broken skin or sores on the body, as you run the risk of contamination and infection. If you are going to administer a pedicure, be sure that you have soaked the client’s feet first. You risk severely damaging the client’s skin otherwise.

After the procedure, drain the foot bath and clean the surface with detergent or dish soap. Rinse the basin with clean water and drain it. You can also use a small pool of water mixed with disinfectant if you are using a whirlpool style foot bath.

Also be sure that you have removed all filtration and removable parts from the bath each evening. Scrub these thoroughly with a brush, then rinse them with clean water. You must also fill the basin with a solution of water and disinfectant, then turn the unit on and let the solution circulate. This removes grime from the pipes of the system. Let the basin air dry when you’ve completed the cycle and drained the dirty water.

Final Thoughts

The cleaner your facility, the better for your clients. You also don’t want to risk your reputation because you don’t know how to properly clean your tools. Hopefully, this tutorial will help make your job of cleaning easier.
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Comfort Soul sells facial tables and pedicure chairs to small and mid-sized massage businesses. Find massage tables online at Comfort Soul.

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Apr 09 2014

Opening an Ice Cream Shop in Six Easy Steps

Published by under Business Tips

An ice cream shop is an excellent business for locations that get a lot of sun. An ice cream shop is like a desert oasis in the middle of summer, and a welcome treat even during mild climes. The snack is a popular favorite beloved by almost everyone. If you want to make this treat your business, you need to follow a few steps to get off the ground.

Business Plan

It is recommended that you start with the Small Business Administration’s website. There, you will find information on what your business plan needs. Make sure that you take into account market research, staffing, equipment and predict how much revenue your business will be taking in. You should also discuss how you plan to market your business.

Costs

The costs depend on how you rent your space. If you purchase your own land and build from scratch, it will be much more expensive than just taking over the lease. You also have to factor in daily costs, like gelato cups and spoons, which will be disposable and require constant replenishment.

Equipment

Ice cream shop supplies are a lot different than what you need to serve ice cream at home. You will need a freezer unit to hold the ice cream, or a machine if you decide to do frozen yogurt. You will also need tables, chairs, napkins and a host of other materials. Any business also needs a credit card machine, storage racks, a hand wash sink (for sanitary reasons) and other odds and ends.

Licenses and Permits

Check with your local health department to see what, if any, certification you will need to start your business. Most likely, you will need to submit to repeated reviews from the health department. You can also check with the offices of your state’s government online, searching for a “how to start a business” link.

Revenue

Examine your business plan closely to identify who your ideal customers will be, and how you plan to bring these people into your store. Will you upsell them with take-home treats, or rely solely on your ability to serve customers? Every model will be different, bringing a different revenue stream with each plan.

Location

Your state’s chamber of commerce is a good place to go for advice on choosing a location. You can see what others in your field have done before you, or you might be able to talk with a licensed real estate agent. You should also consider how large you want your location to be, and how your customers will use it. If you plan to have customers eat ice cream at your location, for instance, you will need to utilize your space effectively and plan a layout customers will feel comfortable with.

Once you’ve settled on a location, you need to hire good staff and line up a quality supplier. Stay persistent and work hard on your goals.

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Apr 09 2014

Support Your Local Team with these Goodies

Published by under Goods and Services

Written by: Radar Gun Sales

Custom sports banners are just one of many ways that good fans show appreciation for a team. It’s not uncommon to see fans from professional sporting games showing off home-made signs, so there is no reason you can’t do it either! Break out the markers and poster board, because these tips will turn anyone into a team’s biggest fan.

Banners

Sports banners with your team’s logo on them can be strung over bleachers, or on the chain link fence surrounding the field. They may display your team’s member name, or show off how many times your team has clinched the championship. There are a variety of ways for you to show off your pride, and banners can be printed to just about any size you need. Print banners on high-quality vinyl to make them durable.

Inflatables

Sports inflatables are another great way to show your love for the team. These inflatables come in many shapes too: like the inflatable “#1” finger, or inflatable tubes you can slap together as noise makers. You can also use these inflatables as a method of fundraising for your team’s travel expenses as well. Order some inflatables and sell them at the field, the proceeds you bring in can funnel right back into the team or go towards making cooler merchandise.

Cheer Squad

A cheer squad is always a welcome addition to any sporting event. If you can’t find cheer leaders to come and cheer you on, arm the people in the stands with everything they need. Give them blow horns, or just fold a piece of paper up and use it as an amplifier. You can also invest in whistles, or have a leader to stand before the stands and lead people in a cheer for the team. Many soccer fans like to chant certain rhymes or poems for their teams too, a tradition that can easily move to the realm of baseball.

Uniforms

The pride of wearing a uniform is important for any growing sports team, and you should order silk-screened prints online to save money. Just be conscious of what is allowed for your league. Some leagues allow nicknames, others do no. Some leagues are ok with portraying the last names of players, some would prefer only the first name.

Baseball teams are like any other sports team. Give them the home team advantage to pump them up for the game, and they will usually perform better.

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Apr 07 2014

Protecting Your Warehouse Stock

Published by under Industrial and Manufacturing

The stock of a warehouse is the distributor’s life blood. Employee theft, natural hazards and a host of other issues can threaten the integrity of that stock. In order to make sure your distribution chain remains intact, it’s important to establish some protocol aimed at protecting your warehouse stock. These tips should help you secure your warehouse and plan thoughtfully.

Stacking

Warehouses use shelving to provide some vertical storage space without cluttering the floor. It’s important to place the heaviest objects on the lowest rack. This helps lower the center of gravity, allowing you to stack more items that are lighter weight. You should also stack similar products together, so they are easy to retrieve when your staff needs them.

Security

Unwanted visitors on the floor of the warehouse can be one of the biggest sources for hazards. You may be missing theft, or there could be an unplanned accident because walk ways are poorly defined. It’s important to install a heavy-duty roll up door so that you can keep things closed off at night. Security cameras are also beneficial. Your door also has the added feature of keeping your stock safe from elements, which is good for perishable items.

Thoughtful Layout

Your warehouse should have plenty of space for personnel to maneuver through the aisles. It’s also important that you keep your external walls free and clear of racks and stock. This saves you from potential theft, and it helps protect your stock from the elements. It also reduces fire hazards, which could catch outside your warehouse and cause serious structural damage.

ETO Doors sells garage and warehouse doors. Open since 2002, ETO Doors uses trained staff to help customers find what they need and get it properly installed. You can browse ETO Doors reviews online.

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Mar 25 2014

Protecting Shipped Products With Foam

By:

With the advent of online shops, knowing how to ship overseas is a very important thing. It is rather important that companies ship all their products in such a way that they are safeguarded from abrasion, impact and even shock that are all possible within the shipping process. Sometimes buyers get anxious because their item might get broken during shipment.

Companies should be able to provide cushioned foam protectors that is able to give protection and is also lightweight for heavy items or packages while shipping. Foam is highly ideal to use for protecting products, especially if they are high in value or can easily be damages. These products can be furniture, ceramic objects or just about anything that can be considered fragile.

Manufacturing companies who have great knowledge on this have mastered the skill of catering to sellers who need massive amounts of custom cushions. Innovative packaging design as well as cost effective protective packaging solutions are ideal for a large number of industries like resellers, moving companies, eBay shippers, packaging material distributors, medical firms, mail order marketers, retailers and gift pack distributors, pack and ship centers and even agricultural growers.

Polyurethane is commonly used to make foam. Global consumption of polyurethane raw materials reaches even over twelve million metric tons. This is because it is a good choice for a durable material to be used for shipping; it is easy to make and highly cost efficient. When deciding to buy for one, polyurethane foam canada is a great choice.

Canada foam by mail understand the importance of foam when packaging shipping goods and it offers packaging options like packaging foam Canada

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Mar 21 2014

Tips for Managing Payroll

Published by under Business Tips

Written by: Allied Time

Summary: Managing payroll requires careful consideration of your employees, and their status with your company.

Every business needs to learn how to manage its payroll properly if it hopes to scale effectively. There are tons of small businesses that run a husband and wife operation, where one keeps the books and the other runs operations. Others acquire outside help. Keeping an electronic time clock is just one piece of the machine. If you’re looking to do payroll for your own business, here are some tips to help you get started.

Independent or Permanent Employees

One of the easiest ways to avoid a legal snafu is to properly define the types of employees that work for you. An independent contractor is not all that different legally from a full-time employee. Employees on your recurring payroll are generally considered full-time, but if you have recurring contract work this becomes difficult to separate with a rule that is hard and fast. Defining the kinds of employees you have will affect everything from your income tax and Medicare spending, to how much you pay in unemployment tax.

Create a Pay Period

Establish a pay period that is set in stone, and automate the process. You can use time clock software to track employee hours in a format that is easy to transfer to a payroll company, if you use one. Decide whether you want to pay employees weekly or bi-weekly, which may be dependent on state law in some situations. You also need to withhold the income tax for that period of time, even if your employees don’t work their scheduled shifts.

Track Hours

A time clock is a handy device to have when you’re tracking employee hours worked. Employees can use a finger scanner, a time card, or sometimes a fob to clock in and out for scheduled breaks and at the start and end of a shift. Time clocks are much more reliable than asking employees to track their own hours. There is too much room for time clock fraud, and the reports are easier to run for payroll when data is automatically tracked and compiled.

Keep Records

Carefully document the agreements that you reach when you hire new employees. Set up payroll and note how many vacation days an employee is eligible for, as well as the amount of sick days they get from the company. If you allow flex time, establish this up front in the employee agreement. You should also discuss when employees are eligible for benefits, including health insurance and 401k.

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Mar 20 2014

Three Ways to Boost Your Makeup Artist Career

Written by Cosmix School of Makeup Artistry

You’ve just graduated from makeup artistry school and your career is going great. But why do you feel inadequate sometimes when a photographer wants you to do more than you’ve been trained to do? While professional makeup training is the main focus for most makeup artists, the successful ones know that it takes more than skills in makeup artistry to excel in the fashion industry. Here are three ways to boost your makeup artist career in fashion.

Learn how to do hair. A valuable asset for any makeup artist is the ability to style hair. Even if you have basic knowledge of styling products and how to use hot tools, a photographer can hire you to do hair and makeup. To learn the basics, find out whether your makeup artistry school offers courses in hair styling. Many schools for makeup artistry understand that you might need to know more than makeup techniques to get noticed.

Learn how to style wardrobe. In addition to hair and makeup, learning how to style wardrobe is another valuable asset in the fashion industry. Basics go a long way. Whether you’re a recent graduate or have been working as a makeup artist for years, knowing how to select the right clothing for an editorial feature of advertising campaign will get you more gigs in fashion.

Keep up with trends. Fads come and go, but a successful makeup artist knows when something is in fashion before it even hits the market. Stay up-to-date with the latest trends by attending fashion shows and perusing industry magazines.

Cosmix School of Makeup Artistry is an accredited, licensed make academy located in South Florida, offering programs in Fashion, Production, and Special FX makeup artistry.

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Mar 19 2014

How to Save Money with Your Shipping

Published by under Goods and Services

By Port Containers

Whether you’re thinking as a company or private individual, if you have a lot of goods to ship overseas, you can’t find a better way to do it than with sea containers. Perhaps you’ve seen them before. Perhaps on the ocean or a river? They’re large steel, rectangular boxes that are piled onto barges and shipped anywhere you need to send them.

Why are they such a great value? For one, they can be much cheaper and simpler to use than other options. If you buy used storage containers for sale this is especially true. Plus, by using your own containers, you can oversee all the packing and tracking to their eventual destination.

But maybe your company doesn’t have the money to buy containers or they simply aren’t transporting enough goods to fill one. Are containers still a sound option? Of course!

In fact, you can either have a shipping company take care of it for you or rent space in another company’s unit that they aren’t using. Either way, you’ll get the service you want at an unbeatable price.

This is another reason why it’s such a good idea to buy a container. If you do, you can rent out space in yours so you’re actually helping to pay for the shipping.

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If you’re in need of a new storage container or used storage containers, you’re in need of Port Containers. The company has a number of container for sale plus all the information you may need as well to better understand what goes into using them.

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