Fashionable and Useful Electronic Gadgets

Apart from those well-known fashion accessories, such as handbags, shoes, jewelries, and many others, stylish electronic gadgets also have become a very important part of fashion accessories that can enhance one’s fashionable style in a wonderful way. Usually, people will choose a gadget based on the functions they need. However, for fashion enthusiasts, the design will be another important factor that will have a great impact on their choice of the gadgets. In the market, there are many different types of electronic gadgets with different functions and designs, but you can always find the following three types are really big hits nowadays.iPad
Without doubt, nowadays, the most popular gadget must be iPad which is listed as the must-have accessory for most fashion addicts. In addition to the advanced and powerful functions boasted by iPads, the stylish design becomes another biggest reason why people eager to own an iPad. It is very chic and edgy to carry an iPad in an eye-catching fashionable case in hands. On the other hand, you can surf the Internet, updating your mood on Facebook or twitter at anytime anywhere with an iPad.Digital camera
Digital cameras can be seen as the most common and popular electronic gadgets among the fashion conscious crowd. People always hope to keep the most unforgettable and beautiful moments in their life forever and with a digital camera, you’ll have no problem to record the moments that touch your mood at anytime. In the market, there are many different designs and styles of digital cameras available. You can always find one that will meet your needs of the functions and styles.MP3/4
From teenagers to adults, an MP3/4 seems to be an indispensable gadget in their daily life, just like the shoes and clothes. With an MP3/4, you can download your favorite songs and listen to them when taking a bus or waiting in a line. Besides, this little gadget can also add chic style to your outfit if it happens to embrace the flattering appearance.To go ahead of the fashion trend, it is not enough to just own trendy shoes, handbags or jewelries, but you should also have the useful and fashionable electronic gadgets to strengthen your personality and personal style.

Four Elements of Small Business Success

The prospect of starting a small business may strike people as exciting, intimidating, or both. This is for good reason; the appeal of being your own boss and launching a lucrative business is tempered by the high failure rate of small businesses. A quick internet search reveals no shortage of studies providing causes and statistics regarding small business failure rates. While the exact rate of each study varies by industry and timeframe, most studies indicate that roughly half of small businesses remain in operation within a few years of opening.This reality invites the question of what makes the survivors successful? I recently had the opportunity to speak with a few small business owners, each of which owns a retail storefront. The purpose of my inquiry was simply to learn a bit about the challenges of being a small business owner, and even more so, to learn what has contributed to their survival and success.Factory Direct Trains is an Asheville, North Carolina-based online and storefront retailer of scale model trains. Factory Direct Trains specializes in HO scale trains, and has been in business for six years. The Music Shoppe is a music store located in Harrison, Ohio, a suburb on the west side of Cincinnati. The Music Shoppe, which has been in business for 21 years, sells musical instruments and offers instrument repair service and music lessons. Originally founded by three partners, the Music Shoppe is now solely owned and operated by one of the original three. The Practical Outdoorsman, which is also located in Asheville, North Carolina, has been in business for two years, and sells retail and consignment outdoor goods for hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, biking and paddling.In speaking with the owners of each of these three businesses, a few consistent themes emerged that were attributed to their success: conservative financing and the general avoidance of debt, a priority on customer service, business differentiation, and the service of an identified market void or opportunity.All three businesses started small, slow and deliberate, and did not go into debt to launch their business. Often small retail operations with comparatively little overhead can avoid business loans with proper planning. Each business owner interviewed began with his own money, and in one case, also the money of two partners. Launching with savings as opposed to financing carries the benefits of a heightened personal commitment, as well as the absence of the burden of third party debt. Business loans or some manner of external funding are often unavoidable in other businesses with higher overhead and fixed costs, but retail can offer more flexibility in this area, depending on the scale of the launch.A contributing factor to the low overhead of these businesses is the small number of employees, the largest of which employs four people including the owner. The absence of debt facilitated a business growth pace for all three, which was directly linked to the growth in sales and revenues. Conversely, some of the interviewees cited the opposite scenario in which a business owner, typically a rival, borrowed money to build a business that was of a scale larger than the market it served, and as such, the business was then unable to both service the debt and generate enough money to cover operating expenses.Commitment to customer service was emphasized by each business. The age of internet retailing and large discount box stores makes it imperative for smaller businesses to offer value through other means, as they generally cannot compete on price and selection. This is where the human element becomes critical. A personal selling effort and cultivated relationships with return customers, if managed properly, are able to win out over the appeal of larger retail options. Some people are willing to pay a higher price for a more personalized buying experience.Differentiation was another key factor identified by all three businesses. Something needs to set your business apart to draw customers through the door. As previously discussed, customer service is one area of differentiation when competing with box stores and online retailers. Customer service is the primary differentiating factor between The Music Shoppe and larger, national chain music stores.Other differentiation criteria were also cited. Factory Direct Trains competes in the scale model train industry. This business, which maintains a physical storefront but is primarily an online retailer, differentiates itself from its competitors by having a sophisticated web presence. Integral to this web presence is a robust and growing degree of social media connectivity. This is a relatively modern model in an aging hobby business. The social media participation makes a small company in North Carolina highly accessible to online customers all over the country and internationally and as such, social media is a key component of Factory Direct Trains’ customer service efforts.The Practical Outdoorsman is unique in that it offers retail and consignment outdoor gear under one roof. Additionally, this business carries local, handmade outdoor items such as hunting knives, fishing lures and flies, and hunting calls. Such products give The Practical Outdoorsman the appeal of local authenticity that is not found in the larger chain outdoor goods stores.Each of the three businesses has remained viable by serving a market demand that was either growing or previously under-served. Two market opportunities were dictated primarily by geography. The Music Shoppe opened in a suburb on the west side of Cincinnati that is roughly 20 miles outside of the city. Since the store’s opening, this suburb has grown significantly, and the Music Shoppe has grown along with the population and economy. The Music Shoppe secured dealer status for large music brands such as Guild, Taylor and Martin guitars, and thus serves as the nearest dealer for such brands for the west side of Cincinnati as well as southeastern Indiana.Research prior to opening revealed to the owner of The Practical Outdoorsman that the nearest similar consignment and retail outdoor goods store was located over 150 miles away. Additionally, this store is located in the northwest quadrant of Buncombe County where there are very few outdoor goods stores. The Practical Outdoorsman is also the only North Carolina Wildlife Agent in this quadrant of the county, which provides such services as selling hunting and fishing licenses. Serving as a Wildlife Agent generates significant customer traffic.Factory Direct Trains found its market niche by establishing a strong web presence in a hobby industry that has been comparatively slow to embrace online retailing and social media usage. In doing so, Factory Direct Trains has been able to reach out and expand its customer base in areas under-served by local hobby shops with more limited selections.Of the four elements discussed common to these three successful small businesses, all seem intuitive from an outside perspective. However, small business start-ups have a high failure rate, and even these seemingly obvious attributes escape some small business owners, who ultimately close their doors as a result. These four elements, debt management, customer service, business differentiation and proper market opportunities, are by no means a comprehensive list of the requirements for business success. The formula for business success contains many more variables than those covered in this article. However, the consistency throughout the three cited examples of debt management, customer service, business differentiation and proper market opportunities, underscores their importance as contributors to business success.

How to Build Business Credit – Build Your Business Credit Fast

Learning how to start building or repairing credit for your business are imperative. Whether you are establishing a business or have an existing one, building a good credit rating is essential, as it helps to optimize your business operations.In the initial stages of building business credit, more often than not, it is necessary to use your personal credit background to obtain funding to finance purchases and attain credit. However, the business credit profile should be separated from your personal one, as relying on one’s own funding to finance the business leaves you personally liable.The process to build up credit for your business must commence prior to starting operations. To start building credit immediately you must be looking on establishing the following:Business as a Legal EntityTo separate your business credit score from your personal credit score it is necessary to establish your business as a separate entity. To qualify as a separate entity the business has to be structured as a corporation or a limited liability company (LLC).Tax Identification Number Acquiring a tax ID number (also known as an Employer Identification Number, or EIN) is the next step involved in building valuable credit for your business. Similar to the personal credit score which is associated with the individual’s Social Security Number, the business credit reports are associated to a tax ID number. The federal tax identification number can be obtained from the Internal Revenue Service and there are a several ways to reach them:
Call the IRS Business and Specialty Tax Hotline at 1-800-829-4933.
Download IRS Form SS-4 from the Internal Revenue Service website
Download IRS Form SS-4 from the Small Business Administration website and submit to IRS by mail or fax. Directions for the SS-4 forms are provided online.Business Bank AccountOpening a business bank account allows you to separate business funds from personal funds. Furthermore, a business bank account can also serve as a bank reference when applying for business credit.How To Start Building CreditWith A Business Credit CardAs a business credit card can be used as a revolving credit line, it is simplest way to build up credit history with on-time payments. Timely payments eventually improve your company’s credit worthiness which facilitates your ability to acquire a business loan. Therefore, use a business credit card for payments whenever possible. Unlike personal credit cards, having multiple active business accounts can be positive, provided that they are in good standing. However, limit the number of business credit cards when beginning and as the company grows you can continue to acquire more.Business Phone NumberAcquiring a business phone line is important as business credit reporting agencies use the phone number to index your business in their databases. In addition, the credit reporting agencies use the telephone number as proof that you are actually conducting business.Business ListingBe sure to supply the exact same business address and phone number to every credit agency and trade credit vendor. Ensure that the business address and phone number are also listed in both the 411 Directory (White Pages) and the Yellow Pages.A D-U-N-S NumberThe D-U-N-S Number is a 9-digit number issued by Dun and Bradstreet that most companies utilize it to verify the credit history of businesses. The United States government and many corporations require their suppliers and contractors to have a D-U-N-S Number. Keep in mind that having a D-U-N-S number is just the beginning. You will need to start building your company’s credit profile by doing business with creditors and/or suppliers that report to Dun and Bradstreet.How to Start Building Credit By Registering with Credit Reporting AgenciesMany of your company’s lenders and suppliers report information to the business credit reporting agencies about your company, such as how your business pays its bills or loans. There are many business credit reporting agencies such as D&B, Experian Business, BusinessCreditUSA, FDInsight, and ClientChecker. The majority of suppliers, creditors, and lenders pull their reports from Dun and Bradstreet, Experian and, Equifax Business. Registering an account with these 3 business credit reporting agencies is a good start.Registering enables your company to start building credit through their credit databases. The database can also be used by potential customers, suppliers and lenders to obtain fundamental information about your company. As it is not mandatory, it may be necessary to ask businesses that you work with to report your timely payments to these business reporting agencies. These submissions enhance your credit rating and verify your registration with the business credit reporting agencies.ComplianceBefore conducting business, it is necessary to obtain all registrations, permits and business licenses that are required in your jurisdiction.In summary, once the above list has been completed, the process of building business credit profile can commence. Obtaining trade credit with vendors is a good place to start. To build up credit score, it is important to seek vendors and suppliers that are set-up to report your company’s payment history to the credit reporting agencies. Naturally prompt payments for purchases are essential in leading to a good credit score. If the business has an existing loan, timely payment of the loan can also help you establish a better business credit score.As it is with the individual credit scores, it is important to review your business credit scores from credit bureaus once or twice a year. Make sure the information is accurate. Upon finding errors, contact the appropriate bureau and report the errors immediately with proper documentation. As the business credit report affects the operations of the business, it is to your best interests to have these agencies present an accurate picture of your business.