11 Major Sales Mistakes to Avoid

Making a sale isn’t always the easiest task.

From finding leads to closing deals and signing contracts, the entire sales process can be long and exhausting. One wrong move, and you could lose a huge lead. The good news is, there are plenty of ways to improve your sales game and get past many of the challenges you’ll face along the way.

Ready to become a better salesperson? Here are 11 major sales mistakes to avoid from now on.

Mistake: You don’t think from the client’s perspective.

It can be easy to get so wrapped up in the task at hand — making a sale — that you forget to look at your potential client’s needs.

“What matters most — when prospecting, during a sale and even after the contracts have been signed — are their problems, their time,” said Rory Channer, chief business officer at CircleBack.

Channer also warned that neglecting the client’s needs could destroy his or her trust in you and shut down all communication.

Mistake: You don’t follow up quickly enough.

Businesses should follow up immediately when a lead is generated because waiting too long could cost them sales, said Brandon Stuerke, president of Advisors Edge Marketing.

Stuerke’s advice is supported by research conducted by James Oldroyd, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. That study found that the odds of leads becoming sales were 21 times greater if businesses were contacted within 5 minutes.

Mistake: You’re leaving it up to the client.

When you have a lead, you need to take ownership of the next steps and avoid leaving it in the client’s hands, said Chris Johnson, CEO of Permission Click.

“For example, when you’re leaving a voicemail, try adding, ‘If I haven’t heard back by XYZ time and date, I’ll try you again,'” Johnson said. “This can yield surprising results.”

Johnson also noted that it’s important to leave things open to follow up if there’s no response.

“This reinforces that you’ll do what you say,” he noted.

Mistake: Your advertising calls to action are all or nothing.

Most salespeople offer only a face-to-face meeting or a telephone appointment as their call to action in their advertising, Stuerke noted, but that’s asking a lot of prospects who are simply exploring options and aren’t yet ready for that level of commitment. Those are leads that, three to six months later, may become sales — but they’re lost early in the process.

Instead, Stuerke suggested offering an option involving less commitment, such as the ability to download a free report in exchange for the client’s information for follow-up.

Mistake: You’re on the defensive.

It’s important to anticipate that customers and clients will have questions about your products or services. Don’t be quick to overexplain — instead, ask thoughtful questions, Channer advised.

For example, if a customer were to complain that a product is too expensive, rather than launching into an explanation about what the product does and what features make it worth the cost, try asking questions like, “Why do you feel that way?” and “What are you comparing it to?” This is a great way to maintain control of the conversation and avoid scrambling to keep the sale on track, Channer said.

Mistake: You have the wrong perspective on cold calling.

“Don’t assume cold calling is a chore,” Channer said, noting that sales professionals should instead look at the task as a learning opportunity.

“Think of cold calling as a puzzle. What will you learn from this experience that you’ll carry forward? What strategies worked or didn’t work?” Channer said. “Of course, everyone wants warm leads, but you don’t learn anything from someone begging you to sell them something.”

Mistake: There is no lead capture on your website.

Many sites have no strategy for capturing useful information about their visitors. As a result, businesses spend thousands of dollars driving traffic to their websites, but they don’t end up capturing any of the prospects’ information, Stuerke said. Prospects come to the site and leave, and the business never knows the visitors were there.

To change this, Stuerke suggested offering visitors free resources in exchange for a small bit of information about them, like their email address. Buyers today turn to the Web for information while doing research, so that’s what you should give them, he noted.

Mistake: You’re approaching events the wrong way.

Heading to a trade show or a big conference soon? Don’t just give out business cards and hope for the best.

“It’s easy to shovel out 500 business cards to anyone who glances your way while walking the show,” Johnson said, but if you really want a big payoff, plan ahead.

“It can pay big dividends to reach out to your target list of high-quality prospects personally, prior to attending, to let them know you’ll be in attendance and would like to invite them by your booth,” Johnson said.

Mistake: You talk too much, and don’t listen enough.

Overpitching can lead to a quick “yes” or “no” decision for clients, especially when you approach it with a “take it or leave it” attitude, Johnson warned. It’s important that you learn to listen to clients more and pitch less. Johnson suggested only talking about 25 percent of the time during the initial meeting.

“It’s far more important that you understand what the client will do with your product than for you to explain what it does,” he said.

Mistake: You’re chasing the wrong leads.

“If you’re a financial adviser or another professional, you may also be spending money on direct mail, invitations to seminars, TV commercials and/or print ads,” Stuerke said.

“Instead of allowing those ‘cooler’ leads to fall by the wayside, businesses should capture and cultivate them. Eventually, they’ll find that instead of constantly chasing leads, they’re harvesting new clients.”

Mistake: You don’t maintain the relationship.

Just because a client signed a contract doesn’t mean your job is over.

“Regardless of the sales structure in your department and who ‘owns’ the relationship post-sale, stick with your clients,” Channer advised. “Call them, email them and continue developing that relationship.”

Why? It can be better for business — and your career — than you realize.

“Well-nurtured clients have a way of becoming advocates, helping you land other deals and generally boosting your career,” Channer said.


Three C’s of Driving Sales: Connect, Convince, Collaborate

In sales, there is a big difference between finishing first and second. First-place finishers make the sale and pocket the money, while second-place finishers leave empty-handed.

To better understand what makes that difference, Mike Schultz and John Doerr, of the sales training and consulting firm RAIN Group, studied more than 700 business-to-business purchases made by buyers responsible for $3.1 billion in purchasing power for their recently published book, “Insight Selling: Surprising Research on What Sales Winners Do Differently”(Wiley, 2014).

“What we learned from these buyers is that winners sell radically differently than second-place finishers,” Schultz told Business News Daily. “We also found that winners exhibit a specific combination of behaviors to achieve better outcomes than other sellers.”

Schultz, co-president of the RAIN Group and sales expert, said in their research they discovered that the way winners sell can be characterized by specific behaviors at three different levels.

In a recent exchange with Business News Daily, the author outlined the three levels and how sales professionals can incorporate them into their current strategies.

  • Level 1: Connect

Winners connect in two ways. First, they are more effective at connecting the dots between customer needs and their company’s products and services as solutions than second-place finishers. Second, winners connect with people. Buyers believe that winners both listened to them and connected with them personally more often than the rest.

Connecting with people and connecting the dots sounds a lot like relationship and solution selling to us. Connecting with buyers on both levels is still absolutely critical to winning the sale. While sellers used to win on Level 1 alone, now it’s just the way to get your foot in the door.

  • Level 2: Convince

Winners convince buyers that they can achieve maximum return, that the risks are acceptable and that the seller is the best choice among all options. Many sellers are not good at convincing buyers, and large portions of sellers aren’t even willing to convince. When they can and do, they win more sales.

  • Level 3: Collaborate

Winners are collaborative in how they work and what they do. They are perceived by buyers to be responsive, proactive and easy to buy from. And buyers believe winners actually collaborate with them during the buying process by working with them to achieve mutual goals. Buyers perceived collaborative sellers to be integral to their success.

“Those who apply these three levels as a systematic approach to selling — and apply it well— not only see themselves in the winner’s circle more often, but also maximize client loyalty and generate the most referrals,” Schultz said.

In addition to determining the three levels of sales, Schultz and Doerr also studied those factors, from the buyer’s perspective, that most separated winners from second-place finishers. They discovered that out of 42 factors, the one that most separated winners from second-place finishers was this: “educated me with new ideas and perspectives.”

Schultz said by educating buyers with ideas, winners share concepts and insights that can have a major impact on the buyer’s goals.

“We call this opportunity insight,” Schultz said. “Buyers typically don’t know alternative opportunities exist until sellers take the time to share them, but once they do, it influences the buyer’s agenda for action.”

Schultz said that doesn’t mean sellers should just throw ideas out left and right and see if something sticks, but that they essentially need to transfer their drive, passion and energy for the possibilities to their buyers’ minds.

While there has been a shift in the way buyers buy, the fundamentals that have been true for decades are still necessary,” Schultz said. However, he believes sticking to the basics isn’t enough to win sales.

“To win today, you must also focus on differentiation, ROI and collaboration,” he said. “Do so while leveraging ideas and you’ll win significantly more often.”


3 Proven Ways to Motivate Your Sales Team

A motivated sales staff is critical to the success of your company. The relationships they build with your clients and customers create the foundation of your organization — not just in terms of individual sales, but also your overall reputation and growth. Lackluster salespeople slowly erode at that foundation, making it harder to hit goals and move into new markets.

There are many different ways to motivate a sales team. Some companies use quota programs with bonuses and other financial rewards. Others go the “fun” route with contests, trips, tickets, dinners and other innovative rewards.  But sales professionals need more than gift cards or event tickets; they want to succeed in their chosen profession by climbing up the ladder.

You also need to keep in mind that not all employees are motivated by the same things. Develop top performers by combining different rewards that will keep all of your staff motivated.

Cold, hard cash is a tried and true motivator. Many sales teams hold weekly, monthly and quarterly contests on both the individual and team levels. You can set the parameters to fit your business, such as the number of widgets sold, the total sales in dollars or the number of new accounts opened.

But here’s the trick: Everyone is used to the system that rewards the top sales performer. Try a system that rewards the individual that tries the hardest. For instance, Dan McGraw, founder and CEO of Fuelzee, said that one of the best ways his company learned about motivation was by rewarding the sales team for “no’s.”

“Every time someone got a no, we tracked it in our system, and the person with the most no’s received a $100 gift card every week,” McGraw said. “This might sound crazy, but you get a lot of no’s when doing sales. The more no’s you get, the closer you are to getting a yes. The prize of getting a yes is way larger than $100, so you still wanted to get there. This nearly doubled our outbound calls and motivated the whole team.”

For some salespeople, the ability to have a little fun during work time is even more of a motivator than money. Common rewards for reaching sales goals or benchmarks include leaving work early, attending a happy hour or maybe giving a trip to reward success over a long period of time.

But fun in small spurts can be just as rewarding. Rick Hanson, a vice president for worldwide sales and field operations with Hewlett-Packard Enterprise Security, said his company uses FantasySalesTeam to award points to “players” (sales reps) for carrying out their daily tasks, like increasing a pipeline or closing a deal. The unique twist is that the reps don’t just compete as individuals, Hanson said; they build teams just as in fantasy football.

“Reps earn points for their FantasySalesTeam based on the performance of their chosen peers and friends, and this creates an environment of encouragement and pressure amongst the players,” he said. “To win the game, they must rely and push on each other to perform. Even more exciting is just how many reps in our sales organization can, and want to, participate.”

Another way to make sales fun is to reward reps with office/desk gadgets and games, said Kevin Baumgart, vice president of sales at Hireology.

“You might not think that a pingpong table for the office would push people and drive behaviors,” Baumgart said. “Try it. From my experience, chair massagers, beanbag chairs, stand-up desk converters, cube art, etc. can all be motivational rewards as well.”

Fun and financial rewards often work, but for some employees, the ultimate reward is the opportunity to get ahead in their careers. Managers should offer incentives that help employees develop skills to move to the next level, including your own time, said Jeff Hoffman, a sales executive, educator and founder of Your Sales MBA.

“Try a sales contest where the prize or a midway bonus is you,” Hoffman wrote on HubSpot. “Work for the leading rep for a few hours, doing whatever they direct you to — calls, demos, presentations, etc. Not only does this motivate your team; it also shows you aren’t afraid to roll up your sleeves and get in the trenches.”

The whole team will see you leading by example, creating an inspirational ripple effect, Hoffman said.

Another reward is lunch with a C-level executive. As Hoffman wrote, “Most sales reps crave one-on-one time with a senior leader to share their thoughts and get an inside look into company strategy.” The chance to impress or relate to an individual on a mentorship level will pay dividends for everyone, Hoffman added.

By offering a variety of rewards, you stand a greater chance of having a motivator for every personality type on your team and developing all of your salespeople into top-tier team players. When your goals and their goals align, only the best things can happen.


Don’t Burn Out! 9 Stress-Busting Tips for Entrepreneurs

As any entrepreneur will tell you, running your own business takes a whole lot of time and dedication. You’re in charge of executing the day-to-day tasks, the long-term strategic planning and everything in between.With all of these responsibilities, on top of your own personal obligations, succumbing to stress and burning out might seem inevitable. But with the right time-management strategies, you can learn to create room on your to-do list for well-deserved rest and relaxation. Small business owners and startup leaders shared their best tips for finding “you” time (and a refreshed perspective) as an entrepreneur.

Build a great team. “Entrepreneurs work longer and harder hours than anyone else, but if your heart isn’t in it, then trying to make your business a success is going to burn you out. Are you spending time on the aspects you love or are you finding yourself stuck crunching numbers or micromanaging others? Hiring the right people and building the right systems will help others carry your vision, so you can focus on what you love in and outside of the business.” – Eric Casaburi, CEO and founder, Retro Fitness

Delegate tasks to free up your time. “To be a successful entrepreneur, a person must sacrifice the most valuable asset in life: time. Yet, to avoid burn out … it is crucial to understand time management. Remember, you are not married to the business, and it does not love you back. Try to delegate, and hire a motivated and competent staff. Sometimes, it is hard to let go of micromanaging, but in order to grow and think big, you must learn how to trust and develop talent.” – Elan Katz, CEO, Cure Urgent Care

Treat your time like a financial budget. “Be fiscally responsible. Budget free time first, much like you would put money into a savings account. Then build a monthly budget around the remainder of your expenses or time spent working. By sticking to your budget, you’re forced to allocate the expenses you can afford and cut unnecessary expenses. For example, you can decline meetings you don’t need to attend, or delegate client questions to team members who are more than capable of handling them on their own. Challenge yourself each day to unplug outside the office and hold yourself accountable to your time budget.” – Yuri Sagalov, co-founder and CEO, AeroFS

Try a different tech tool. “Take a week away from your computer and try running everything from your [mobile device]. It’ll force you to communicate and get closer with your team.”– Konrad Billetz, founder, Frameri

Unchain yourself from your desk. “There is nothing like a change of scenery to get creative juices flowing in ways they wouldn’t otherwise. Take time out of the office and use that time to think creatively about the business. [This] sends a message to the team that unconventional thinking is good, rewarded and something to constantly seek out.” – Sandra Ponce de Leon, co-founder, Lifetime Memori, Inc., creators of Trunx

Pursue a nonwork hobby you’re passionate about. “Pick one thing you really love doing that has nothing to do with work, whether it’s reading, dancing or singing. Take some time to do … that nonwork-related [activity] and make it a routine.”– Katherine Niefeld, president and CEO, BlinkPR

Play as hard as you work. “You have to find the one thing that makes you happiest and do it, and for me, that’s golf. I play when I am home at least four times a week, because I can still do business on the course. I apply the same passion in my work as my play, and they both give me the same thrill and challenges.” – Dan Brinton, CEO, Fractured Prune Doughnuts

Stick to your routine, no matter what. “My business requires so much traveling, so I try hard to stay grounded and healthy no matter where I am. I keep my routine and eat as well as I can to take care of myself. Every day, I try to meditate in the morning, and I do yoga at the end of the day as often as I can. I have very challenging and exhausting days, but when you do what you love, it’s easy to get re-energized and start in again the next day.” – Jennifer Adams, CEO, Jennifer Adams Worldwide

Actively make time for yourself.“I need euphoria, peace and tranquility — aka, the expensive luxury of doing nothing. These things have to be incorporated in your daily living. I always find time to meditate at least 20 minutes a day. I find the time to get in the car and drive an hour to a place unknown, because the ride is silent and peaceful. You have the time, [but] you also have to make the time. Learn how to create time for yourself. There is nothing wrong with stepping away from the desk or computer and saying, ‘Enough is enough. I am taking a break.'” Jimmy Gilchrist, founder, Rock N Dade


Stressed Out! Unrealistic Expectations Put the Pressure on Workers

Stressed about work? You’re in the majority: New research finds that more than half of employees are stressed at work on a day-to-day basis.

The study, from the staffing firm Accountemps, revealed that 60 percent of U.S. workers say their work-related stress levels have increased over the last five years. Younger workers are feeling the most pressure. The research found that 64 percent of employees between the ages of 18 and 34 said they feel job-related stress, compared to just 59 percent of workers 35 to 54 years old and only 35 percent of professionals over the age of 55.

Large workloads, pressure-filled deadlines, unrealistic expectations from bosses and the pressure of trying to attain a healthy work-life balance are the main causes of stress for employees, the study found

The most common ways employees try to reduce their daily stress is by exercising, enjoying time with friends or significant others after work, engaging in a hobby, listening to music and taking vacations.

Bill Driscoll, a district president for Accountemps, said business is moving faster than ever, and employees feel the crunch when it comes to imminent deadlines.

“Workers shouldn’t suffer in silence,” Driscoll said in a statement. “They can tap internal resources for help or seek advice from their managers to ensure they meet work expectations while maintaining a healthy work-life balance.”

The study found that most managers recognize the tremendous amount of pressure their employees are under. Specifically, 54 percent of the executives surveyed acknowledged that their staff is stressed, and 55 percent have noticed that employee anxiety is on the rise.

“A stressed employee can have detrimental effects on the department or company, including decreased morale and productivity, and increased burnout and turnover,” Driscoll said. “Managers should look for signs their staff is overworked — like missed deadlines or excessive overtime — and talk to employees to pinpoint triggers and implement stress-relieving solutions.”

To help both employees and managers, Accountemps offers several tips for combating work-related stress:
Employee Tips

Use your time wisely. There is only so much time during the workday to get things done. Be sure to stay organized so you can keep on task and finish assignments on time. Also, instead of juggling multiple tasks at once, try dividing up time throughout the day to focus on each of your key projects.
Ask for help. If you feel like your to-do list is too overwhelming, don’t be afraid to talk to your manager about your workload. If you think you need help with an assignment, ask for it.
Give yourself a break. It is important to take some time during the day to refresh. Step away from your desk and go for a walk or grab a snack. Even if you can’t get away from your office, just take a few minutes to look away from your computer and think about some non-work-related things.

Manager Tips

Assist in prioritizing. Give your employees help in prioritizing what assignments need to be done first. Knowing which assignment you are expecting first, and when, helps employees better schedule their time. This is also an opportunity for managers to determine if there is too much work on employees’ plates.
Offer stress-help resources. Make sure all of your employees know about the stress-related programs your organization offers. Encourage them to take advantage of these offerings, which may include stress-help webinars, wellness programs and yoga or meditation classes. Also, set a good example by also taking part in these types of classes.
Have fun. Even though jobs may serious, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to have a little fun around the office. Find ways to lighten the mood by planning social activities or staff celebrations.

The study was based on surveys of 2,200 chief financial officers from companies in more than 20 of the largest U.S. metropolitan areas and more than 1,000 U.S. office workers.


10 Tips How To Avoid Locksmith Fraud

As scary as it may sound, Locksmith scams are becoming a part of our daily lives. Locksmiths target home and auto owners when they are at their most vulnerable state and in desperate need for help- in an emergency and needing immediate assistance.

Most of the times we feel that searching for a locksmith online is probably a smart decision. However, we could become a victim of fake or scamming locksmiths who are imitating legitimate ones on the online directories. The case is these fake locksmiths impersonate the local locksmiths and they don’t even have any local workshop. Sometimes these so-called locksmiths are not even properly trained and are operated through out-of-state call centers.

A few cautious steps taken by you can help in avoiding a scamming company or an untrained impersonator.

1. “Local” is the Keyword

Do your research in advance. Take good time and do not rush with the search.
If a locksmith business is registered with a local address, Google the address and find out if any other business is registered with the same address.

Even if you are in an emergency, you should always be aware of the services that answer the phone with any generic phrase, such as “Welcome to locksmith services”. If the one you have called is unwilling to provide you a legal business name, you need to find another locksmith.

Also see if the companies are using any “800” number or a local number. “800” number can indicate that the locksmith you are calling could be an offshore call centre.

2. Check Identification and License

When the locksmith arrives at the destination it is important to ask for identification, including a locksmith license where one is applicable.

Out of all the states, only fifteen of them require locksmith licensing, making it a crime work or even advertise as a locksmith without valid credentials. Check if your state is one of the 15 states on Google.

3. Beware of low prices

Always get a quote on the phone before allowing any technician to meet you. Be skeptical of any locksmith providing unbelievably low price. Those are major red flags. Always ask about the labor costs, emergency costs as well as the service fees.

Never allow anyone to start work on the home or vehicle without having full knowledge of the expenditures you could incur.

4. There better not be any hidden charges

It is important to inquire if there are any additional charges, especially in case of emergencies.

A scamming company might also claim the lock on your home or vehicle is obsolete and it needs to be replaced. They will charge you an arm and a leg to replace the existing lock with one which they will say is a high-security lock but that seldom is the case. You could end up paying them to replace the existing good lock with a cheap one for a higher price.

5. Ask for Vehicle Identification

Always keep an eye on your surroundings. In case someone arrives in an unmarked vehicle and claims they are with a specific locksmith company definitely do not allow them to start work. Legitimate locksmith companies always send their technicians in a marked vehicle with the Company logos, phone numbers, and brand named tools. This is a call for awareness.

6. Ask for a written estimate

Always ask for a written estimate. This will cover you from hidden fees and additional labor charges. If a locksmith is being hesitant to give you a signed written estimate then do not allow them to start the job. This can mean that they are not reputable and just want to make some quick money.

7. On site estimate should tally with the written estimate

Any reputable locksmith company will provide you with a detailed estimate during the telephonic conversation. This will include cost of arrival, labor as well as the necessary parts. This estimate will with the on site estimate. Locksmiths looking to scam you will change their estimate upon arrival by adding extra hidden fees even before the work begins. Be safe from such dishonest service providers.

8. Say ‘No’ to Drilling and Replacement

Any locksmith company that suggests the lock needs to be drilled or replaced is a fraud. Experienced locksmith technicians can unlock almost any door. If they want to drill the lock, say a straight ‘No’. There is a high chance they are scamming you and looking for more money. All genuine locksmith companies trains their technicians to properly unlock any door.

9. Avoid cash transactions

All genuine locksmith companies give you the option to pay by cash, check and/or credit. Any company that insists on cash transactions only is looking for quick money and there is a 99.99 per cent possibility that it is a scam. This is also an important question you should ask upfront. Make sure you are aware of how they take payment BEFORE they start work.

10. Do not leave the locksmiths unattended during the work

I do not suggest that you should not trust the person who has arrived to help you, but it is important to keep an eye on what they are doing. Your carefulness can prevent you from being scammed in more ways you can imagine.

If you feel that you have been overcharged or scammed by a locksmith, you should immediately contact the office of your state attorney general. If you are lucky, the AG’s office might have a provision of engaging a staff to work as a mediator between the customers and the businesses and you could get your money back. Be careful and stay safe.



7 Hot Topics For Amazon Affiliate Markets

When you’re looking for an affiliate, somewhere to post your Amazon Links and AdSense, the advice you’ll get from any given sector might be different, but… We’ve found 7 specific hot topics that rock our world financially. And you can build your business from anywhere. You just need a computer, a website, and a way to send email, do social media, and write. Yeah… Writing is a key component of most any affiliate market, but you can do this.

1 – Camping and Survival Gear

No matter who is sitting in the oval office, campers, hunters, and survivalists are always looking for great ways to survive the coming apocalypse. Yeah, it will arrive eventually, whether it’s by way of natural disaster or some man-made BOOM. The truth is, we all need to know how to survive without technology.

Even if it’s nothing more than a book to read when the computer’s down.

2 – Golf Gear and Sports Equipment

You’d think since every man in the white house is addicted to his par count, golf gear would have outsold its lifespan. Nope. It’s still one of the hottest topics on the internet. And that site about golf shoes? Yeah, it is my highest hitter. Specialize in a given topic and you’ll have this one at the bank!

3 – House Flipping and Remodel Tips or Equipment

You might go to Lowes, or Home Depot for supplies, but that equipment purchase online from Amazon.com with directions from a great website? You bet your Uncle John’s hammer they’ll take your advice over the fix it biscuit they find at the local hardware store, especially if you include pictures and details about why you’d recommend the Black & Decker over Stanley.

4 – Mommy Tips and Child Care

Toys. Kids clothing. Furniture. Accessories. Child Care ideas. Helpful tips for raising children, and anything ‘mommy’ related will kick off a big stir online, and there are so many relevant forums to market your site from. IDEAS are everywhere. You don’t have to write about everything that happens in your house, there are plenty of inspiring stories to share.

5 – How to ANYTHING

If you know how to… write about it. Find affiliate products and links. Share them on your site. And talk about it to your friends.

6 – Dogs and Pets

It’s worth it to pay for dog grooming articles, to post on my Pet Affiliate Site, because people spend thousands of dollars each year on their pets.

7 – Books & Videos

Of course… Whatever suits your fancy, find a topic and build a site where you can share your link.

The key to marketing your affiliate links and AdSense links online is having a highly targeted, well designed website with well written articles relevant to your topic. The more content you have, the more profitable your program.


How To Maintain the Quality of Services

When businessmen attain the desired level of service, maintaining their standards become a great challenge for them. It is a tough job to maintain quality at excellent level for the service providers. It is as difficult and important as to establish and attain such quality.

There are generally two ways of maintaining service quality – the proactive approach and the reactive approach.

The proactive approach is all about trying to gather feedback of the customers about the quality and suggested ideas of improvement. Proactive approach can be done by the method of –

• Staff training
• Gap analysis
• Surveys and administering questionnaires

Staff Training – Staff training is one of the major aspects of the proactive approach. Personnel are trained generously by their companies and they spend quite a good amount of money on it so that they can tackle all the complaints and queries of customers. It will be alright if the company decides to hike the price of its services or to change its offerings. For example, multiple customer queries have been handled by the staffs about the price hike, if any fast food chain decides to increase the price of the items in the menu. If the staffs can not provide satisfactory explanation of the price hike, then it would lead to customer dissatisfaction and poor quality.

Gap Analysis – In order to analyse service quality, the step of gap analysis is often adopted by the providers. Every company wants to offer the best quality to their customers. But the best standard is always not possible for them to provide. So, the gap between the existing and desired service standard helps the providers to improve the offering in the future.

Surveys and questionnaires – This approach helps a company fulfil the expectations and demands of their customers and to improve its standards as well. Demands and common issues of the customers can be identified with the help of this survey. This also helps the company to improve its offering.


A reactive approach is to improve the service standard after receiving complaints from the customers. The company firstly apologizes to the customers and then tries to resolve the situation.

Measuring Service Quality

Always remember to place a metric system for measuring standard. These parameters will help to rate customer expectations, service models and businesses. It helps to create a competition between the staffs to maintain service standards.

Once you put this measuring system, a standard can be chosen as mandatory service standard that the company tries to maintain.


7 Way to Find Investors For Your New Business

If you have a solid business plan, you may want to look for potential investors. While this is a difficult step, you may want to stay ready. It’s suggested that you should talk to hundreds of potential investors before choosing the right one for your new business. Here are a few good ways to look for the best investors.

Start-up Launch Platforms

You can contact companies that offer research, information and assistance to new business owners. They help you start your business and look for the right investors. These companies have millions of members all over the world. So, you can get in touch with a good company that offers these services.

Angel Networks

Another way is to look for angel investors. They will offer funds in addition to provide advice, mentorship and access to valuable contacts. As a matter of fact, this is all what you need in order to get your business started and then run it with great success. Make sure you do try out angel networks. These organizations have a list of tons of angel investors who help new businesses with their funds.

Crowdfunding Sites

Just like other sources, crowdfunding sites give you access to different types of good investors. They include common people who want to be part of the next big thing as well as philanthropists who want to help others with their dreams. Aside from this, crowdfunding sites may include accredited investors looking for fresh ideas for investment.

Actually, each site has different focal point for incentivizing investors. Therefore, we suggest that you read up on each site to choose one that aligns with the powerful strategic goals you have set.

Incubators And Accelerators

Since your new business is like a baby, you need to work with a good accelerator or incubator. This way you can get the investor resources to grow your business. These investors perform a big role and help you turn your ideas into a business.

At times, some incubators and accelerators provide physical space so you can establish your office. Since other start-ups will share the same physical space, you can share ideas growing your businesses together. Start-up accelerators like Ycombinator and TechStars provide advice and many other services to investors like you.

Small Business Administration

You can also contact the Small Business Administration for funding. The organization has been offering solid programs for the stimulation of the economy. Basically, they offer loans and grants to small start-ups.

Social Networking Sites

Aside from LinkedIn, many social networking websites can help you get in touch with different types of investors. These sites help you to contact investors all over the world. Moreover, they promote your products or services in other countries of the world as well. Some good names in this field include Meetup, Cofoundr, Startup Nation and EFactor, just to name a few.

Private Equity Firms

If your start-up has great potential to grow into a big business, private equity firms can help you. They can provide you with millions of dollars so you can grow your business. You can check them out as well.

So, try out these funding sources to grow your new business.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9628236

25 Valuable Tips for Online Entrepreneurs in 2017

These tips for Online Entrepreneurs were complied for entrepreneurs and ordinary people who are interested in the best way to earn money online.

Many people are turning to the internet to make money thanks to the number of opportunities available on the web.

However, not everyone is successful in producing income as well as others, and often times end up failing or just quitting altogether.

In most cases this is due to selecting the wrong business model or not choosing a specific niche, poor planning and high expectations.

Becoming a successful entrepreneur is no easy accomplishment. Sacrifice, hard work and an unwavering determination for achieving greatness are required. So is surviving your mistakes — because they will happen.

During the holidays we tend to disconnect entirely from work. After a few splendid weeks being detached, it’s especially hard to get back to focus. A study established by Glance Networks, found that most businesses don’t get back to normal productivity levels until usually three weeks after New Year’s Day.

However, with some planning, you can get back into things faster than your competition and set your business up for a productive month (and year). Before you enter the world of online entrepreneurship it is important that you do your homework.

To help you in this respect given below are 25 valuable tips you can do right now to hit the ground running in 2017.

25 Tips for Online Entrepreneurs in 2017

Invest In a Good Internet Connection

If you are online, you need a good internet connection. Without a fast internet connection, you could miss out on orders and customer questions. In short, your business could be paralyzed.

Choose The Right Business for You

Make sure you pick the right kind of business to start with. There are many options from selling products to starting a blog to trying your hands at MLM (multi-level marketing). It is very important that you study the industry and then pick something you have real interest in and are passionate about.

You can also choose a business idea or niche that you have experience or knowledge about regarding any topic of your choice. In case you know nothing, it is important that you take a few online entrepreneurship courses to expand you’re thinking and get your creative juices flowing.

Solve A Problem You Have

Go after solving a problem that you have. Something that’s near and dear to you, not some random market opportunity. Because, when things get hard, if you’re chasing just the dollars, or a random market opportunity, you’re not going to be able to have the determination or the passion, to stay with it.

Be Creative

Believe it or not, most ideas on the internet are copies of one another from giants like Orkut to Google to Facebook. Remember that it is okay to copy as long as you can do better than the original. If you are going to provide people the same thing, see how you can do it differently. This point is very important as many people often get inspired by a business but then lose due to stiff competition simply because they couldn’t outdo competitors.

Create a Work Space Devoted for Business Only

When starting out many online entrepreneurs work from home. The people you live with will likely interrupt you. It’s hard to focus on important business when people are trying to have a conversation with you. Create a space just for work only, nothing else.

Time Management The Key

It is very important that you remember the time gap. Big companies like YouTube are not earning big profits yet, well at least not as big as they can. You need to know that if you are doing everything right you will eventually take home a huge chunk of money but you need to be a little patient with everything.

Many people start an online business and close it within a few months losing all hope. You need to plan carefully and see when you expect to break even. It is best to go for a business model that requires little to no investment as this is one of the main benefits of online entrepreneurship as in numerous cases, you need nothing more than your time and efforts.

Get Started Early

Its best to get things done earlier in your day to ensure that you get scheduled task done before the day can get away from you. Distractions can rear their ugly heads. The best time to grind is 6-7am get up 8am hit the gym 9-2pm grind.

Implement An Exercise Plan To Your Daily Routine

Hitting the gym can be great for productivity. It gets your blood pumping and can help your brain function better to think more clearly and effectively. You should consult with a physician to ensure you are healthy enough before starting any exercise plan.

Plan Out Meals Ahead Of Time

It is very helpful to plan out your meals ahead of time so that you may stay fueled while you are working and have food ready to go so that you don’t need to take breaks to cook or go out and get food.

Plan Daily Task Monthly And Weekly

It is important to plan what you are going to be working on specifically on a monthly, weekly, and daily basis. Plan out what you want to accomplish in a year and plan out the major tasks that need to be done to reach those goals on a month to month basis.

At the end of the month plan out what to focus on during the next month week by week and day by day. Once the next month is planned out, plan the most important tasks that need to be done in the next week on a day by day basis. This way when you get up in the morning you can look at your list.

Paint A Picture For Long-Term Success

The New Year is a perfect time to set goals for all facets of your life. People who openly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to achieve their goals than those who don’t, and those odds for success increase to 50 percent when you write those goals down.

Strip Away Productivity Blockers

What was holding you back or frustrating you last year? I’ve found it’s the little things that end up wasting the most time. Like Social Media browsing! But the good news is that identifying time-sucks is the first step to eliminating them.

Set Rules About Email And Social Media

Ask yourself do you really need to be on Facebook or any of the social media sites for work. After self-evaluation, if you do, try to get in and out as quickly as possible without getting sucked into non business Facebook or social media activities. Use a timer to monitor the time spent and do not go over the selected time slot for no reason. The same goes for email.

Organize Your Web Assets

This extends much further than just organizing your business. Your web assets are everything from your website to your social media profiles to your hosting account. These need to be in order. All appropriate assets should be optimized for your brand. For example, your social media and webpages should have the same relevant keywords. They should be incorporated within an integrated marketing plan. It is important that they should be completely updated with the latest information about your company.

Protect Your Brand’s Online Reputation

Online business is all about reputation. The slightest mistake can taint your brand forever. The key is control. Setup a Google Alerts notification for your brand. That way, you’ll be able to inspect any mention of your brand. Have a firm set of branding and social media guidelines, so anyone posting on behalf of your brand is aware of what you expect from them.

Learn to deal with customer complaints and adopt a mindset of solving problems; even if the customer is wrong. You should be aware of social media channels your competition is using. And you should inspect keyword usage from all your competitors using the variety of tools Google provides.

Maintain Customer Data Safely

One problem business owners have is that they need to be able to keep data safely. You have a legal obligation to protect any customer information obtained online. For example, you should store information on separate devices and have a number of secure backups.

Do You Know Your Competition?

Any good business will know its competition. You need to know who you’re competing against so that you know why customers choose you over others, or vice versa. Nowhere is this more important than in the online world.

Stay On Top of the Latest Trends

The online world is one that is constantly changing and evolving. It evolves faster than anything you’ll see in the real world. Furthermore, you’ll see social media trends evolving all the time. You need to be on top of this so you too can be on the cutting edge of online marketing and branding.

Don’t Run From Risks

Just like a brick and mortar business, online businesses also face risk, which is why you need to prepare in advance. For example: If you run a website there is always the risk of it getting hacked etc. You should keep these points in mind and plan accordingly. Always have security and proper backup so that you don’t end up in trouble.

Be Persistent

No business becomes an overnight success story. This is something you’ll have to accept if you want to enter the business world. Persistence will pay off in the end if you continue to do all the right things. You need to be consistent and stay focused on your goals.

Follow Your Heart

Simply put… the ability to do what you’re passionate about, and discovering a new way to live with purpose. There is a true saying “Certainty is more dangerous than ignorance.” “It’s up to us as entrepreneurs, to see the world as it should be –not necessarily how it is. When you think you’re sure of the way things are, that’s when you will get passed up and you don’t see the opportunities that real entrepreneurs foresee.”

Know When to Call It Quits

Sometimes an idea will fail. The biggest challenge for an entrepreneur is to know when an idea has failed. It’s no point trying to revive a dead duck. So don’t be scared to change course if necessary.

Success Takes Hustle

Hustle is an act of focus, not frenzy. Hustle is about subtraction and addition. It’s not about doing more, it’s about focusing on the things you need to do, in order to move your business forward.”

Promote, Promote, Promote…

It is very important that you promote your business. No one will know about it till you make them. You can use methods like blogging or advertising (Google etc.) to reach your target audience so that more and more people will know what you have to offer.

Don’t Give Up

“Don’t give up, don’t take anything personally, and don’t take no for an answer.” Refuse to accept failure as an option.